The Working Party on Spirits met this morning to discuss amongst other things this issue, and expressed concerns over finding the most adequate way to communicate to consumers.
Speaking in Brussels, Copa & Cogeca Secretary-General, Pekka Pesonen, said: “We welcome publication of this report and we believe that self-regulation is the right way to provide adequate communication and information to consumers, whilst ensuring that the economic viability of the sector is not endangered.”
The Chairman of Copa & Cogeca’s Working Party on Spirits, Mr Alexandre Imbert, affirmed: “It is good news for spirits producers to see this report finally published. We particularly welcome the fact that the Commission has trust in the sector to self-regulate and find the right way to inform consumers. We are happy to work on a common position with all the sectors, but there are certain specificities in the spirits sector that need to be taken into account. For small producers, labelling is the only marketing tool available, and it is important to remain intact. We think that the use of off-label information sources (internet) could be better harnessed to provide consumers with adequate, detailed information. The possibility to introduce a serving size is also being considered, since the proposed portion of 100 ml is not realistic and would mislead the consumer.”
The alcoholic beverages sector is expected to propose within a year a harmonised approach aiming to provide consumers with information about the ingredients present in alcoholic beverages as well as the nutritional value. This proposal will be assessed by the Commission and if the Commission considers the self-regulatory approached to be unsatisfactory, it will launch an impact assessment to review further available options in line with Better Regulation principles.