Young Scot Co-Design project examining alcohol marketing launched by Joe FitzPatrick MSP


Young people in Scotland will lead an in-depth, six-month study into the impact of alcohol marketing.

The #YSHealth panel will Co-Design alcohol harm prevention recommendations that will feed directly into the Scottish Government’s public consultation on measures to restrict alcohol marketing which is due for release next Spring.

In 2018, the Scottish Government published its Alcohol Framework 2018 which aims to reduce alcohol-related harm in Scotland.

The framework has several actions relating to young people which will be explored during this project. These include putting the voices of young people at the heart of developing preventative measures on alcohol, and consulting and engaging on the appropriateness of a range of potential measures. These include mandatory restrictions on alcohol marketing, as recommended by the World Health Organization.

The Young Scot Co-Design project will involve 20 young people aged between 13 and 25 from across Scotland. Their work will focus on the extent of alcohol marketing young people experience, restrictions and rules on alcohol marketing, the impact alcohol marketing on consumption and alcohol-related harm, and how alcohol marketing could be restricted.

During the project, the #YSHealth panel will look at direct advertising of alcohol – outdoors, online, on TV, in cinemas and in print. They will also consider promotion on social media including ‘liking’ alcohol brands, playing games involving brands, sharing alcohol-related content and sponsorship of sports and events.

The young people will also meet academics, advocacy groups and will engage with other young people across Scotland through focus groups and surveys.

Joe FitzPatrick MSP, Minister for Public Health, Sport and Wellbeing, said:

It is crucial that we put the voices of children and young people at the centre of determining how best to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm. 

I am grateful to Young Scot and to the members of the #YS Health Panel for dedicating their time and efforts to considering the current alcohol marketing environment and making recommendations on how this might be restricted. 

Their findings will help to inform the proposals for our consultation on restrictions to alcohol marketing issuing next spring.

Louise Macdonald, Chief Executive, Young Scot, said:

The Young Scot Co-Design project on alcohol marketing is giving young people the power to shape policies and decision-making that will encourage positive behaviours by everyone. Young people are experts of their own experience, so it is vital their insights and ideas shape future recommendations and solutions.

Find out more about Young Scot Co-Design



Reid Aiton