The Government intends to include a specific warning on bottles and cans that alcohol can lead to certain types of cancer, an Oireachtas Committee has been told.
Minister of State at the Department of Health Catherine Byrne confirmed that long-awaited legislation on alcohol promotion and marketing will include this warning.
The Public Health (Alcohol) Bill passed the Joint Committee on Health stage after Labour TD Sean Sherlock withdrew a number of unannounced amendments.
Mr Sherlock apologised to his parliamentary party for proposing the amendments without consultation. He has, however, publicly defended his amendments and said that while he was not against health labelling as such, “I think the health implications in other areas like suicide, heart disease and pregnancy, should also be considered”.
Ms Byrne told an Oireachtas committee that when the proposal to specify cancer was first put forward in the Seanad it was feared that it would create a “hierarchy of disease” and give the impression that “other serious conditions are less important”.
However, she said that the proposal for a specific warning on the link between cancer and alcohol had gone to the European Commission and it had raised no objection.
The Government is proposing a Public Health (Alcohol) Bill to comply with an EU directive on labelling.
Source: Ronan McGreevy, Harry McGee, The Irish Times, 20/06/18