Subscriber login Close [x]
remember me
You are not logged in.


Published:  23 July, 2008

The Portman Group has published its revised code of practice tightening the regulations on promotions, sponsorships, websites and branded merchandise such as toys and clothing. Group director, Jean Coussins said: We have swept more than 60 products off the market because their design appealed to children or encouraged anti-social behaviour. We have got rid of products with pictures of illegal drugs on the label, products in containers shaped like bullets, test tubes, syringes and ice-pops, and drinks named after kids' cartoon characters,' she added. Now we are plugging another gap and extending the code to wider promotional activity. For example, teddy bears and other children's toys bearing alcoholic drinks branding will not be acceptable. Neither will brand websites that encourage dangerous drinking games. The code is supported by more than 120 companies and the group's member companies, which include Bacardi-Martini, Diageo, Pernod Ricard and Scottish & Newcastle, produce approximately 95% of the alcoholic drinks on sale in the UK. Code complaints are heard by an independent complaints panel chaired by Lord Condon, the former Metropolitan Police Commissioner. As at September 2002, a total of 124 complaints ,have been dealt with - 68 (55%) were found in breach; 45 (36%) were not; four were out of scope' and seven are currently under investigation. In 82% of breaches, companies complied with panel decisions and in other cases retailer action resulted in offending products disappearing from shelves.