Debate: Should Canada require cigarette-style warning labels on alcohol?
It’s hard not to notice the graphic warning labels on cigarette packages across the country. As evidenced by the photo
It’s hard not to notice the graphic warning labels on cigarette packages across the country. As evidenced by the photo above, they’re pretty gruesome.
Now, a recent article in the Journal of Public Health Policy is arguing Canada should do the same with beer, wine and spirits.
Mohammed Al-hamdani, a graduate of the Master of Health Administration program at Dalhousie and deputy with the Canadian Medical Association Journal argues that "Like cigarettes, alcohol is a social drug associated with considerable health and social costs."
It seems parts of Canada, and many other countries, agree.
The Yukon and Northwest territories already have regulations requiring all alcohol labels to warn consumers about the link between drinking during pregnancy and birth defects.
In the U.S., all alcohol labels must state: ‘GOVERNMENT WARNING: (1) According to the Surgeon General, women should not drink alcoholic beverages during pregnancy because of the risk of birth defects. (2) Consumption of alcoholic beverages impairs your ability to drive a car or operate machinery, and may cause health problems’
Al-hamdani suggests that just a written warning isn’t enough. He’s pushing for cigarette-style warnings – graphic images included.
"I recommend the development of direct health warnings; increase in visibility of the warnings; incorporation of pictorial health warnings; and consideration of plain packaging for alcohol products," he wrote.
Do you think the graphic cigarette labels deter smokers? Do you agree that they would help people limit their alcohol intake, too? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
-Katharine Watts, associate web editor
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