Alcohol Regulations

The Alcohol Beverages Advertising Code (ABAC)

Australia has a quasi-regulatory system for alcohol advertising: guidelines for advertising have been negotiated with government, consumer complaints are handled independently, but all costs are borne by industry. 

The Alcohol Beverages Advertising Code (ABAC) Scheme is the centrepiece of Australia’s quasi-regulatory system and is administered by a Management Committee which includes industry, advertising and government representatives. For more information, visit abac.org.au

The Code extends to point of sale material produced by alcohol beverage producers (not retailers).  For enquiries on the Code, contact Gordon Broderick (ABAC Chair) at info@abac.org.au or The Communications Council at hello@communicationscouncil.org.au.

To download the ABAC Responsible Alcohol Marketing Code click here.
To download the Best Practice for the Responsible Marketing of Alcohol Beverages in Digital Marketing click here.


The Alcohol Advertising Pre-Vetting System (AAPS)

The Alcohol Advertising Pre-Vetting System (AAPS) pre-vets all alcohol advertisements, while complaints are channelled through the Advertising Standards Board (ASB).

DOWNLOAD AAPS FORM

All new pre-vetting applications must be directed to the duty pre-vetter.  Please call 08 8411 2158 to obtain the name and contact details of the duty pre-vetter from a pre-recorded message.

Jacqui Binder -  NSW

Martin Salkild - NSW

Bernadette Healey - VIC

ABAC Annual Report:

See the ABAC Annual Report here

The Commercial Television Industry Code of Practice:

This code sets the program scheduling for the advertising of alcoholic drinks: ‘Commercials which Advertise Alcoholic Drinks’, section 6.7 to 6.11. Download Commercial Television Code of Practice.

New Zealand Code for Advertising Liquor:

Note to Agencies: If you are producing material to be used in Australia and New Zealand, please also refer to the New Zealand Code for Advertising Liquor.

Also refer to www.alcoholguidelines.gov.au for general guidelines on Alcohol.

Queensland Advertising ban on drink promotions:

In April 2005 all external advertising of drink promotions was banned throughout Queensland under the Liquor Act 1992.

Members should be aware of this when booking advertising for clients and/or when accepting advertising for your media outlet.

The following must not be advertised external to premises with a liquor licence or permit:

  • free drinks
  • multiple quantities of liquor, for example two for one, six drinks for a certain price etc
  • the sale price of liquor
  • any type of drinking promotion, for example, happy hours, all you can drink, toss the boss.

This will only apply where there is consumption of the alcohol on the licensed premises or premises to which the permit relates. The ban on this type of advertising does not apply to bottle shops.

Advertising includes, but is not limited to:

  • all written and oral advertising
  • advertising over the internet
  • advertising on radio and TV and in newspapers and magazines
  • all types of signage external to the premises
  • the handing out of flyers
  • SMS
  • touting.

The Liquor Act 1992 can be downloaded from here 

Further information: phone Ph: (07) 3237 0466

Updated July 2016