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Alcohol Legislation

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 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 and sections 14, 17 and 20 of the Act come 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 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 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.