CSPI on JAMA Article on Underage & Excessive Drinking

Statement of CSPI Alcohol Policies Project Director George A. Hacker

February 25, 2003

Today’s findings surely don’t come as a surprise to alcohol producers. They’ve known all along that underage and excessive drinking accounts for half of their market share. In fact, the industry’s advertising and marketing firepower seems more directed at underage and problem drinkers than it is at any other segment of the market. Regardless of its public stance, the industry considers underage and excessive drinking to be profit centers that need nurturing, rather than problems that need solving.

As a result, society bears enormous economic, social, and health burdens. Big Booze should pay its way in the form of substantially higher taxes at the state and federal levels. Those taxes have had few and meager increases in the past 50 years. The tax revenues should be earmarked for prevention and treatment programs.

And, alcohol advertising should not be permitted in media that reach millions of youths.


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