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Alcohol Legislation

Regulations under section 23 of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018

The Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 (Sale and Supply of Alcohol Products) Regulations 2020 (S.I. No. 4 of 2020) come into force on 11 January 2021.

They are the first set of Regulations made under Section 23 of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018.

They prohibit:

  •  the award of, or use of bonus or loyalty card points in relation to the sale of alcohol products
  •  the sale and advertisement of alcohol products at a reduced price or free of charge when sold with one or more alcohol products or another product or service
  •  the sale and advertisement of alcohol products at a reduced price for a period of three days or less.

Further Information

Read Department of Health (DOH) guidance on section 23.

Regulations under section 22 of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 

Section 22 of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 came into force on November 12 2020

Section 22 provides for the separation and visibility of alcohol products and advertisements for alcohol products in specified licensed premises:

  •  A separate area of the shop separated by a physical barrier which has a minimum height of not less than 1.2 metres and through which alcohol and advertisements for alcohol are not visible.
  •  One or more enclosed adjacent storage units on the shop floor in which the products are not visible up to a minimum height of 1.5 metres.
  •  A maximum of three open adjacent units, each of 1-metre width and 2.2 metres high.

You can find frequently asked questions here.

The Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 was signed into law on 17 October 2018. The primary policy objectives of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 are to:

  • reduce alcohol consumption to 9.1 litres of pure alcohol per person per annum by 2020
  • delay the initiation of alcohol consumption by children and young people
  • reduce the harms caused by the misuse of alcohol
  • ensure the supply and price of alcohol is regulated and controlled in order to minimise the possibility and incidence of alcohol related harm

The Act includes provisions for minimum unit pricing, structural separation, health labelling on products that contain alcohol, restrictions on the advertising and marketing of alcohol, the regulation of sports sponsorship and restrictions on certain promotional activities. You can find frequently asked questions here

You will find further information including guidance documents for industry which have been published to help with the implementation of the legislation here on the Department of Health website.

Role of the Environmental Health Service

The Environmental Health Service’s role in this area primarily involves the enforcement of the new legislation.

Sections 14, 17 and 20 of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 came into force on November 12 2019.

Section 14

Section 14 prohibits the advertising of alcohol products in the following places:

  • in or at a school (including its grounds) or within 200 metres of the perimeter
  • in or at an early years’ service or within 200 metres of the perimeter
  • in or at a playground owned or maintained by a local authority or within 200 metres of the perimeter
  • in a park or open space owned or maintained by a local authority or the OPW
  • in or on a public service vehicle (taxi, hackney, limo, bus)
  • in or on a train or light rail vehicle (luas)
  • in or at a train station or bus station
  • at a bus stop or light rail vehicle stop

An advertisement on or attached to a licensed premises or a premises where alcohol products are manufactured or sold by wholesale is not prohibited.

Section 17

Section 17 prohibits the manufacture or import for sale, or the sale in the State of children’s clothing which promotes alcohol consumption or is branded with an alcohol product name, trademark, emblem, marketing image or logo.

Section 20

Section 20 prohibits the advertising of alcohol products in a cinema except immediately before or during an over 18 year’s film or in a licensed premises in a cinema.

Contact details for Environmental Health Officers

Please click here for details on how to contact your Environmental Health Officer

AskAboutAlcohol.ie  

AskAboutAlcohol.ie is a HSE website which provides information on alcohol – about how much we’re drinking, how it affects us health-wise, and how we can gain more by drinking less.

The website has been created to provide an authoritative information source on alcohol risk and offers support and guidance to anyone who wants to cut back on their drinking.