Minister met with alcohol lobby before warning labels sent back for review

Dana McCauley Minister met with alcohol lobby before pregnancy warning label sent back for review. (18 June 2020)
Food Minister Richard Colbeck met twice with alcohol industry lobbyists, including a major political donor, before a ministerial forum he chairs sent the independent regulator’s proposed mandatory pregnancy warning label back for review. Senator Colbeck met with the industry representatives in February and March after Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) recommended the label, with red and black lettering stating “HEALTH WARNING: Any amount of alcohol can harm your baby”, be printed on alcohol bottles. Sydney Morning Herald

Global study finds broad support for alcohol warning labels.

Mirage News Resounding yes to message on a bottle – global study finds broad support for alcohol warning labels (19 June 2020) Simone Pettigrew from the George Institute commented on the research findings from a 7 countries – 68 percent of Australians and 67 percent of New Zealanders surveyed are in favour – come at a critical time, with Australian and New Zealand Health and Food Ministers shortly to vote on recommendations by independent authority Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) to introduce long-awaited alcohol warning labels.

Commission evidence to FASD Inquiry

Mirage News (26 June 2020) Commission evidence to FASD Inquiry. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner, June Oscar, spoke of the connection between trauma and alcohol consumption by pregnant mothers, which can lead to FASD. “First Nations peoples suffer ongoing and unresolved trauma across generations due to the impact of colonisation and its ongoing legacies which include the continuation of discriminatory policies and practices,” said Commissioner Oscar. The Commissioner noted that while alcohol consumption in Indigenous women is lower than the general population, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women who do drink during pregnancy are more likely to drink at levels which significantly increase the risk of FASD. “As a result, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities have a higher prevalence of FASD than the general population.” Mirage News

Four-year follow-up of a randomized controlled trial of choline for neurodevelopment in fetal alcohol spectrum disorder.

Wozniak, J.R., Fink, B.A., Fuglestad, A.J. et al.  (12 March 2020) Four-year follow-up of a randomized controlled trial of choline for neurodevelopment in fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Journal of Developmental Disorders.