SFA and Diageo team up to promote responsible drinking

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The Scottish Football Association and drinks company Diageo have launched a campaign to promote responsible drinking.

They hope to reach one million Scots with the message through the Drink Positive campaign.

The initiative will use the William Hill Scottish Cup as a platform to encourage football fans, coaches and players to be aware of the effects alcohol has on the body and to encourage moderate drinking as part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle.

Amateur football coaches across Scotland will receive alcohol awareness training about how alcohol impacts on sporting performance and can then build responsible drinking messaging into coaching sessions.

Fans will also be targeted with media messages and engagement which aims to raise their awareness of the harmful effects of alcohol misuse through the DrinkIQ website (www.drinkIQ.com).

The campaign was launched at Hampden stadium in Glasgow with a team of Diageo responsible drinking ambassadors and Scotland assistant coach James McFadden.

He said: “Alcohol and football are a common pairing, but it’s important for fans to recognise the dangers of excessive drinking.

“Our new partnership with Diageo will help to spread the message to fans of Scottish football that responsible drinking is vital.”

Chris Rawlings, Scottish FA commercial director, added: “We are delighted to have the support of Diageo to convey such an important message.

“Football plays an integral role in communities across Scotland and, as such, it is our responsibility to use the platform we have to promote a balanced approach to alcohol consumption.”

Diageo’s 3,500 employees in Scotland will also be encouraged to take the message to friends and family across the country.

Charles Ireland, general manager for Diageo GB, Ireland & France, said: “We want people to really understand the effects of alcohol misuse and to drink in moderation.

“The power of football to reach people and to connect with them is massive and we are delighted to be working with the Scottish FA to harness that power and use it to positively transform the way people think about alcohol in Scotland and the way they drink alcohol.”

However, Alison Douglas, chief executive at Alcohol Focus Scotland said: “Allowing drinks companies to run health campaigns is simply misguided.

“At the end of the day drinks companies rely on people drinking to support their revenue. Organisations who put their profits over people’s health should have no part in providing health advice. “

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