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Vast majority of alcoholic drinks comply with Portman Group Code, says audit body

Published:  29 August, 2013

The drinks industry has been given a boost today with an independent audit report that states the vast majority of alcohol products conform to Portman Group responsibility standards.

The study was carried out as part of the Portman Group's ongoing compliance work and saw independent consultants, Campden BRI, audit a randomly selected sample of 500 alcoholic drinks in supermarkets, convenience stores and off-licences. The vast majority of the sample (92.3%) was found to be compliant with the Portman Group Code of Practice.

From the sample, 39 (7.7%) products were seen as having potential problems in complying with the Code. The Portman Group, which is led by chief executive, Henry Ashworth (pictured), said it is now "contacting the companies involved to discuss the findings and companies will have three months to make any changes to their product packaging".  Those that do not comply will be referred to the Independent Complaints Panel to investigate a potential breach.

Kay Perry, head of regulatory affairs at the Portman Group, said: "This independent audit has confirmed what we know - that the overwhelming majority of alcohol producers package their products responsibly and are compliant with the Code.  It has highlighted some issues with a few products and our compliance team will contact the companies involved and we will give confidential advice to these drinks' producers who may alter their packaging or opt for an Independent Complaints Panel decision."

* Note the Portman Group's Code of Practice on the Naming, Packaging and Promotion of Alcoholic Drinks applies to pre-packaged alcoholic drinks and the promotional activities of all drinks producers.  A copy of the Code can be downloaded from the Portman Group website.