South African alcohol brands withdraw support for big festive events to support COVID-19 efforts

By Rachel Arthur contact

- Last updated on GMT

Pic:getty/cesareferrari
Pic:getty/cesareferrari

Related tags: Alcohol, South africa, coronavirus

The South African alcohol industry has pledged to withdraw support for, or association of brands with, major entertainment events over the festive period: saying they will not associate themselves with activities that have the potential of attracting large crowds.

South Africa is seeing a rise in the number of cases in the country: with President Cyril Ramaphosa due to address the nation this evening following meetings of the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC), the President’s Coordinating Council (PCC) and a special sitting of Cabinet.

Events should not attract large crowds

On Thursday, the South African alcohol industry (representing the South African Liquor Brandowners Association and Liquor Traders Formations among others), announced that it would support the Government’s measures to reduce the spike in coronavirus. During the festive season, the sector has, therefore, decided to withdraw support for or associating its brands with naming rights for major entertainment events for which an events licence is required.

Further, members will not become involved in or associate themselves with activities that have the potential of attracting crowds that exceed the regulation restricting capacity of 50% of the outlet (The National Disaster Act regulations for Lockdown Level 1 further restricts number of patrons to 250 people in an indoor setting and maximum of 500 people at an outdoor occasion).

The alcohol industry calls on consumers, customers, event organisers and all interested parties to avoid gatherings that do not conform to the required and necessary COVID-19 health and safety regulations; as well as encouraging people to download the COVID Alert SA contact tracing app.

“The summer season is a time for social gatherings, celebrations and attending events, which can be “super-spreader” events and carry a huge risk of transmission of the virus. As a nation, we simply cannot afford this. Let’s work together to limit the negative effects of excessive alcohol consumption and ensure a safe and responsible environment for all,”​ said Sibani Mngadi, chairperson of the SA Liquor Brandowners Association, on behalf of the industry. 

South Africa's alcohol industry has been particularly hard hit by the pandemic with the goverment imposing coronavirus bans on the sale of alcohol​ twice this year.

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