Call to ban alcohol TV ads before watershed

The majority of Scottish adults support banning alcohol adverts on TV before the watershed, a survey has found.

The poll from YouGov found that of over 1,000 respondents, 68 per cent supported a watershed ban, and 71 per cent said cinemas should only show alcohol ads before films with an 18 certificate.

In addition, 51 per cent also backed a ban on alcohol ads in parks and streets, as well as on public transport.


Alcohol Focus Scotland’s Chief Executive, Alison Douglas, said: “Despite ever-growing evidence that exposure to alcohol marketing is a cause of drinking onset and binge drinking, the current system of self-regulation is failing to protect our young people.”

Dr Nathan Critchlow of the Institute for Social Marketing and Health at Stirling University said that the limits on alcohol advertising could have the same effect as that of tobacco.

“Although tobacco and alcohol are not identical products, the impact of various UK Government restrictions on tobacco marketing on youth smoking rates are plain to see, so it is logical that restrictions on alcohol marketing may be similarly effective.”

Alcohol deaths

Last month, statistics released by the National Records of Scotland (NRS) showed deaths due to alcohol rose from 1,020 in 2019 to 1,190 in 2020 – the largest number since 2008.

Analysis by NRS reveals alcohol-related deaths were higher than average in all but two months of 2020.

Also see:


Alcohol deaths up 17 per cent in Scotland

Minimum alcohol pricing a potential ‘life-saver’, say experts

Scotland trials free alcohol for alcoholics

Pressure grows on Westminster to introduce minimum pricing