The South African liquor manufacturers, including Distell, Diageo, Heineken, Pernod Ricard and South African Breweries made a clarion call to traders and consumers to uphold the principles of selling and consuming alcohol responsibly and adhering strictly to the COVID-19 safety and health regulations.
As an industry we have seen the devastating impact of the ban on the value chain and its now in each of our hands to put in place responsible practices and forms of behaviour to trade responsibly to ensure we protect the livelihoods of many thousands of people across the industry’s value chain.
The manufacturers have said they would continue to work closely with the Government and traders to ensure compliance with the gazetted provisions. These rules include making sure there are never more than 50 people in their outlets; to insist on facemasks, to obey the stated opening hours; and to not sell to visibly intoxicated customers, minors, or pregnant women.
Sibani Mngadi, spokesperson for the manufacturers, warned traders that it supported enforcing the Government’s conditions for selling. “We need to take a firm position on this: if a trader fails to comply with the regulations and loses their licence, collectively, we have agreed that we will stop servicing and supplying them.”It has provided a hotline for traders and customers to report any breach of the regulations. The manufacturers have agreed to promote the hotline number on their websites and platforms and to enhance the responsible-messaging campaigns.
He added that the industry also appealed to consumers to play their part in changing our drinking culture and assist in enforcing these measures. It called on consumers to moderate their use of alcohol and to behave responsibly as consumers. “We advocate a zero tolerance for drinking and driving, and the need to take steps to reduce the numbers of drunk pedestrians on the streets,” he said.
The industry recognises it has a collective responsibility to protect all our livelihoods as part of the alcohol value chain. Consumers, equally, have a responsibility to behave appropriately and not expose themselves and others to unnecessary harm and potential infection.
It calls on the traders and consumers alike to abide by all the lockdown rules and make sure that the drinking occasions do not contribute to the spread of infections and unnecessary burden on the health system.
Hotline number: 080-001-4858
The South African alcohol industry includes but is not limited to the National Liquor Traders Council, South African Liquor Brandowners Association (SALBA), the Beer Association of South Africa (BASA), Vinpro, the National Liquor Traders Council, and manufacturers.
Issued by FTI Consulting on behalf of the South African liquor Industry. For interviews, or further information, please contact: