Youth Exposure To Alcohol Ads In Magazines Declined

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Youth Exposure To Alcohol Ads

Youth exposure to alcohol advertising in magazines declined 49% from 2001 to 2005.

The study also found, however, that a substantial portion of the alcohol industry's advertising remains in magazines with disproportionate youth (12-20 year-old) audience composition: 44% of advertisements and 50% of spending in 2005. Magazines with disproportionate youth audience composition were defined as those with youth audiences greater than 15%, the proportion of youth ages 12-20 in the general population age 12 and above.


Most alcohol companies have successfully shifted their advertising to publications that meet the voluntary maximum of 30% youth audience composition adopted by the beer and distilled spirits trade associations in 2003. According to CAMY's report, It Can Be Done: Reductions in Youth Exposure to Alcohol Advertising in Magazines, 2001-2005, less than 1% of alcohol advertisements and alcohol advertising dollars in 2005 were in magazines with youth readership exceeding the industry standard, down from a high of 11% in 2002.

Also today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published an article using CAMY data in its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). Figures in the two studies differ slightly because CAMY analyzed per capita exposure while CDC reported total exposure for each age group. The CDC publication emphasized the need for the industry's standards to be strengthened to prevent advertising in youth-oriented magazines, and called for continued independent monitoring of alcohol marketing to youth to further assess changes in youth exposure to alcohol advertising in magazines and other media.

"The alcohol industry has done a good job of following its voluntary standard when it comes to advertising in magazines," said David Jernigan, executive director of CAMY, "but the standard itself is not strong enough to adequately protect youth from needless exposure to this advertising."

The CAMY report analyzed 16,635 alcohol advertisements placed in national magazines between 2001 and 2005 at a cost of nearly $1.7 billion. The report also found that:

-- Alcohol advertising in magazines declined overall, but youth exposure fell substantially more than adult exposure.