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Glasgow launches pilot scheme to encourage drinkers to switch to lower alcohol brands

Published:  11 September, 2013

Scottish drinkers are being urged to swap their usual drink for a lower alcohol version as part of a pilot campaign launched this week by the Scottish Government Alcohol Industry Partnership (SGAIP).

The initiative involes 11 retail partners that will each display point of sale material across their combined 150 outlets asking shoppers to 'spot the difference' between higher and lower strength wine and beer. The campaign hopes to encourage drinkers to cut the number of units they are drinking and change their drinking behaviour.

On and off-trade partners to the pilot campaign will help promote lower alcohol brands with on shelf and at the point of sale material including shelf barkers, wobblers, beer mats and posters.. Those taking part include Waitrose, Asda, Spar and Filshill. The scheme has been started in Glasgow.

The project is to be evaluated in the hope of extending it to other areas of the country.

Paul Hegarty, stakeholder manager at Drinkaware and leader of the SGAIP initiative said: "We want to evaluate how we can best encourage consumers to swap their usual drink for a lower alcohol version, as we continue to educate people about the health benefits of cutting down on units. Partnerships like this help Drinkaware evolve, so not only do we provide information and advice about alcohol to consumers, but we can also help people change their behaviour."

Ian McDonald, sales and marketing director, of JW Filshill added: "As a company with a robust corporate social responsibility (CSR) agenda, we are delighted to have the opportunity to participate in this excellent campaign to encourage consumers to choose lower alcohol versions for their usual drink.

"No-one expects us to tell people that they can't or shouldn't drink alcohol but if convenience stores can play their part by offering their customers access to alcoholic drinks that have a lower ABV and promoting these products in-store, people can then make an informed choice and hopefully think about the health implications of alcohol."

Craing Bonnar, Asda's operations director for Scotland and Northern Ireland, added: "Asda's pleased to be working with the Scottish Government Alcohol Industry Partnership on this innovative campaign, which will run in ten of our stores in and around Glasgow.  In response to growing customer demand, we offer a market-leading share of low ABV products and we're always interested in finding new ways to highlight these to our customers.  By trialling different point of sale materials, this campaign will help us to understand what motivates our customers when they choose low-strength products, so we can ensure that our range always meets their expectations."

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