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  • Beware: Alcoholic Drinks That Look Like Ready-to-Drink Juice for Kids Are in Supermarkets

    Senator Pia Cayetano worries because these alcoholic drinks are made easily accessible to kids
    by Lei Dimarucut-Sison .
Beware: Alcoholic Drinks That Look Like Ready-to-Drink Juice for Kids Are in Supermarkets
PHOTO BY @piacayetano, @flavoursofiloilo/Instagram
  • When shopping for your child’s baon at the supermarket, be sure to read the label properly. You might end up giving your kid an alcoholic drink without knowing it. Alcopops, or ready-to-drink flavored drinks that have an alcohol content of 3% to 7%, are being sold in our local supermarkets and come in packaging that make them look like they are juice drinks for kids. 

    At a Senate ways and means committee meeting on August 15, 2019, Senator Pia Cayetano said she wants manufacturers to pull out the alcopops from stores and repackage their products to avoid confusion with drinks intended for kids.

    “Some of the supermarkets I’ve been to have a section for alcohol beverages. This one is [placed] beside the juice for kids. For some nasa alcohol section, sa iba sa juice [section] and it is easily available in convenience stores, in groceries,” she said. “May straw pa,” the Senator noted, implying that the alcopops, which come in doy packs, mimic the look of juice drinks for kids.

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    Senator Cayetano, who chairs the committee, also noted that the cashier did not ask for identification during a purchase. Alcoholic beverages, by law, should not be sold to minors. 

    “We’re trying to sell a product that has 7% alcohol and is packaged to make it very attractive to children. It is unethical and unlawful,” Cayetano stressed.

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    In the same hearing, Senator Cayetano called the attention of the Department of Health and the Food and Drug Administration to look into the matter.

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    Health Undersecretary Eric Domingo said he learned that alcopops are registered, but are not regulated. 

    “These are actually registered products and it is very bothersome that products have evolved  but the regulation hasn’t evolved. It’s time really for us to look into this,” he said.

    Senator Cayetano also called on the manufacturers to “do what is morally right.”

    “Mananawagan ako sa matitino at maayos na businessmen na siguro naman sarili n’yong anak hindi nyo paiinumin niyan, whether sari sari store, grocery store. Hindi kailangang antayin na may ilabas na regulations ang DOH at FDA for us to know that children should not be drinking products that are supposed to be sold to adults,” she addressed them.

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