We know that with great brands
comes great responsibility
We take our responsibilities very seriously as a manufacturer. From the water used at factories, to the labelling on a bottle or the ad you see on TV, responsibility is a key factor in all our decision making.
We work to ensure our energy usage is minimised at our sites, and use whatever sustainable options we can throughout the production process. Our BRC audit scores reflect this, and we use simple measures in our offices as well – such as energy-efficient lighting and recycling facilities.
As members of several trade bodies we are kept up to date on all the latest issues (both in the UK and internationally), and are informed and supported on how we can act on them. From Sustainability Road Maps to membership of BiTC, and the updates on European directives, we make sure we know what's happening and that we are a part of it.
We also ensure our advertising is responsible and in line with all the latest guidelines, and take advice from the Committee of Advertising Practice and Clearcast to ensure compliance with ASA regulations. We are able to access training through some of these bodies to help further our staff development.
Various members of our team are also active participants in a number of working groups established as part of the Government's Responsibility Deal, and have signed up to many of the pledges: not only on alcohol, but also in the workplace. Our Employee Alcohol Policy is a clear example of how we approach such things, but you can see more about our pledges on the Responsibility Deal website.
From the very early days of its development, we have been involved in The Portman Group, and became full members in 2004. We have always believed that responsible marketing is vital in the promotion of any alcoholic and soft drink brand and have recognised that we have a wider role to play here. Some of our advertising may have been a little risqué in the past, but we always aim to entertain and engage with our consumers within the guidelines that are set. This communication has also allowed us to reach a vast number of young adults with important messages about responsible drinking. We have now worked with Drinkaware for many years and have consistently played a proactive role in helping to shape their campaigns and communicate their messages in innovative and effective ways.
Responsible marketing is embedded in the company's ethos and all our marketing staff receive training from The Portman Group and CAP, as well as regular internal updates and a comprehensive checklist in a simple-to-use Code of Conduct, which also gives guidance on local alcohol legislation.
This includes our own digital code which we used with the Portman Group to lead the development of clearer guidelines for all advertisers when it became apparent that this growing and ever-changing area of communications needed different boundaries and advice for those using it.
As a responsible drinks producer, we proactively raise the bar on industry best practice and have also introduced a number of our own initiatives (such as Look After Your Mates) to help raise awareness across a broad range of different consumer touch points. We have also used our knowledge of alcohol and soft drinks technology to develop exciting no-alcohol drinks (such as Sorelle) that offer consumers a credible alternative to alcohol.
We consistently support local police projects (particularly in Gloucestershire) but have also sponsored a combined project – the UniBus – to get students home safely after a night out. In Belfast, the SHS Group also support the SOS Bus, looking after consumers in the city centre at weekends. We also support Community Alcohol Partnerships, a scheme that brings together local retailers and licensees, trading standards, police, health services, education providers and other local stakeholders to tackle problem-drinking and associated anti-social behaviour.
Our commitment to supporting responsible drinking is consistently recognised through industry awards and commendations, and our latest project is to offer free “Think 25” online training for retailers.