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STAMFORD, Conn. - Starting next year Diageo will begin providing American consumers with alcohol content, serving size, macro-nutrients, carbohydrates, and calories for its alcoholic beverage products.
"This consumer data will be included on our Web sites, in printed promotional materials, and ultimately on packaging materials," said Guy L. Smith, e.v.p.
Responding to a petition filed recently with the Tax and Trade Bureau of the U.S. Treasury Department (TTB), Diageo endorsed the broad concept proposed by the coalition of consumer groups. "We applaud the coalition of consumer advocacy organizations for their proposals to provide increased product information to consumers, and endorse its intent and purposes," Smith said.
Diageo North America, however, opposes any mandatory requirements on labeling. According to Smith, "More government regulation is just not necessary. Voluntary approaches to providing consumer information will work. Broad mandates from government are not called for."
Diageo's North American advertising and marketing code requires responsibility messages on all its advertising and marketing materials. "Diageo's voluntary labeling also gives the consumer the information they want about carbs, calories, alcohol content, and serving size in order to make comparisons across beverage alcohol," Smith noted.
Diageo North America would continue to carefully study consumer attitudes and interests, Smith said. "We expect to conduct continuing research, learning from consumers about their desire for this type of information. We expect to move forward thoughtfully, making sure we provide consumers with meaningful information in the best, least confusing ways possible. We will also be developing our global policy on consumer information during the course of 2004."