One corkscrew too much

Wednesday September 13 2017 by Vitisphere

On September 5, France’s health ministry and the National Cancer Institute (INCA) launched a public health campaign to encourage people to eat and drink the right things to prevent cancer. The campaign uses media, internet and digital advertising near supermarkets with two visuals: one persuades people to limit their consumption of alcohol, the other promotes the health benefits of vegetables and wholegrain cereals.  

Stigmatising the wine industry

The first visual has raised the hackles of the wine industry. It shows a corkscrew with the following strapline: “Reducing your consumption of alcohol decreases the risk of cancer. It’s not that big a deal, really”.

Wine is quite clearly the target of the campaign. Frédéric Rouanet, chairman of the Aude wine growers’ association, claims producers have had enough. On September 6, at a meeting between Languedoc producers’ organisations and the private secretary to the agriculture minister, he clearly voiced his discontent. “We asked the ministry to stop the campaign or at least remove the corkscrew on the visual”.

Vin & Société reacts

Vin & Société also reacted strongly via a press release dated September 7. “I am particularly outraged by the campaign that directly targets our products. Everyone knows the corkscrew symbolises wine consumption, sharing and informal gatherings. I noticed that the campaign has been rolled out extensively at a time when French wine farms are busy harvesting and the traditional in-store September wine festivals are in full swing”, said Joël Forgereau, the association’s chairman. He stressed that Vin & Société has always advocated quantified drinking guidelines that can easily be understood by consumers. 

 

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