Raids on alcoholic energy drinks

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By April, 1 Moscow’s deputies plan to forbid alcoholic energy drinks sale in all the cafes, shops and night clubs of the city. Today this law-in-draft is being discussed in the Moscow City Duma. The law will come into force in Moscow and in its region. Furthermore, volunteers and municipal deputies will start raiding to prevent the youth (the main energy drinks’ consumers) from drinking.

At the same time they want to forbid retailing light alcohol and tonic beverages in regions. The law concerns shops, cafes and clubs.

Kirill Shchitov, the Head of the Committee on physical education, sports and youth policy, informs that on February 18 in the course of the deputative hearings city parliamentarians together with Moscow Region Duma will implement new legislation to forbid alcoholic energy drinks sale on the same day. And the first hearing of the law-in-draft in Moscow takes place on February 25. In the electronic referenda system there exists an opinion poll “An active citizen” that allows to share the thoughts about the necessity of the law. Shchitov states that if the majority of active citizens vote against restrictions on selling alcohol, the Moscow City Duma won’t approve the law-in-draft.

“We are speaking about the prohibition of alcoholic energy drinks in Moscow and its region. We don’t provide any compensation to manufacturers who won’t be able to sell its alcoholic drinks stock before the law comes into force,” said a Moscow City Duma deputy.

Moscow parliamentarians already have the support of a number of social organizations, the Municipal Council of Moscow and the Federal Service for Supervision of Consumer Rights Protection and Human Well-Being. According to the latter, the production of alcoholic tonic drinks increases by 20% annually. The number of consumers grow for account of youngsters and women of reproductive age. The combination of alcohol and tonic agents in a beverage stimulates energy metabolism in the organism, disturbs nutrition and a person becomes more addictive to alcohol, informs the Federal Service.

“Light alcoholic drinks contain the same flavor properties as non-alcoholic drinks that’s why it’s difficult to feel alcohol’s organoleptical properties”. Alcoholic energy drinks have an attractive consumer pack with symbols of youth on it, and the data about alcohol percentage are unreadable. All this creates a false image of a non-alcoholic drink,” rebels the Federal Service for Supervision of Consumer Rights Protection and Human Well-Being.

Alexey Nemeryuk, the Head of the Department of Trade and Services of Moscow, explains that the Moscow City Duma and the Moscow Region Duma should legitimate the project at the federal level.

“The legislation on alcohol is controlled by the Russian government and the regions have no the right to prohibit the sale of some beverages,” claims the officials. Shchitov gives the example of Krasnodar Krai where the same prohibition took place. “The Federal Antimonopoly Service sued the local authorities but lost the case, so there already exists a legal precedent,” said the deputy.

Before the law-in-draft adoption is approved there's time to explain the harmful use of alcoholic energy drinks. Thus, Evgeny Babenko, the Head of Arbat municipal entity informs that deputies together with volunteers and famous area residents plan to conduct raids in playgrounds, yards and other places where the main alcoholic energy consumers gather.

“For instance, if Vasily Lanovoy,  an actor, approaches young people and explain the harmful use of such drinks, it’ll have a great educational effect. We see many youngsters who walk along Arbat St. drinking an energy drink and then become completely insane. What can we do if the street entices so many creative minds who like these toxic drinks,” says Babenko.

According to the municipal deputy, in the district exists the campaign named “Arbat Street is smoke-free” that will be complemented with the appeal to give up alcoholic energy drinks. “We can do it not only through announcements and social advertising. In the framework of the antismoking campaign any person can meet a doctor who offers to measure pressure before and after smoking. I think doctors can explain the harmful use of alcoholic energy drinks. “Permanent residents of the street” (musicians and artists) can be also involved into the campaign. They can organize some flashmobs and presentations,” specified Babenko.

Text and pictures by GAZETA.RU