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Calling time on responsible drinking: A qualitative study of perceptions of information on alcohol product labels

Davies, Emma, Cooke, Richard, de Visser, Richard O and Conroy, Dominic (2022) Calling time on responsible drinking: A qualitative study of perceptions of information on alcohol product labels. British Journal of Health Psychology. ISSN 1359-107X

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Abstract or description

Objectives: This study aimed to explore (a) how people interpret responsible drinking messages on alcohol product labels, and (b) the acceptability of including health information on labels.
Design: Qualitative interviews.
Methods: Face-to-face semi-structured interviews were conducted with 20 people aged 21-63; 18 were classified risky drinkers using the AUDIT-C. They were shown three sets of alcohol product labels: one including three responsible drinking messages (drink responsibly), one with three positively worded messages (drinking less reduces risks) and one with three negatively worded messages (drinking more increases risks). Health messages included information about cancer, liver and heart disease.
Results: Thematic analysis identified three themes: ambiguity about alcohol labelling; identifying oneself as responsible; and acceptability of enhanced product labelling. Participants were critical of responsible drinking messages and wary of conflicting information in the media. They positioned themselves as responsible, knowledgeable drinkers. They did not appear to support the inclusion of health information on labels; however, novel information was considered more impactful.
Conclusions: Responsible drinking messages were seen by our sample as an alcohol industry ploy. Although health messages about cancer were seen as potentially impactful, the ability of consumers to position themselves as unproblematic drinkers means that they may not see the information as relevant to themselevs. Understanding factors that increase the personal relevance of messages is needed, alongside an exploration of a wider range of methods for alcohol health communication

Item Type: Article
Faculty: School of Life Sciences and Education > Psychology and Counselling
Depositing User: Richard COOKE
Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2022 15:21
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2023 14:04

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