ANMF (Vic Branch) has welcomed state, territory, federal and New Zealand food ministers’ approval of a mandatory label for all bottles of alcohol which will warn against drinking during pregnancy.
The label, recommended by Food Standards Australia and New Zealand has black, white and red text stating “PREGNANCY WARNING: Alcohol can cause lifelong harm to your baby.”
The move was welcomed by the national organisation advocating for individuals and families affected by foetal alcohol spectrum disorder, NOFASD Australia.
NOFASD Australia COO Sophie Harrington said: ‘Tens of thousands of Australian families who are impacted by FASD are celebrating today’s decision, because they know how significantly this lifelong disability affects the health and wellbeing of our loved ones’.
‘This new mandatory label will go a long way to improve community awareness of the risks of drinking alcohol throughout pregnancy and will result in fewer babies born with FASD in years to come,’ Ms Harrington said.
ANMF (Vic Branch) wrote to the Victorian Health Minister Jenny Mikakos and the Agriculture and Regional Development Minister Jaclyn Symes in support of the new labelling.
The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) also welcomed the ministers’ decision, which it said was the result of lobbying by almost four thousand community leaders and advocates and more than 180 community, health, medical and research organisations.
‘It’s commendable that Ministers are now introducing a pregnancy health warning which the evidence has proven will effectively alert people to the significant risks of alcohol exposure in pregnancy,” FARE CEO Caterina Giorgi said.
Manufacturers will have three years to implement the new label across all alcoholic beverages.