South African Breweries (SAB) has committed to use its scale, reach and expertise to accelerate responsible alcohol consumption through the launch of a new evidence-based platform.
The new platform is called SAB Sharp, a play on words communicating SAB’s leadership in championing responsible consumption of alcohol through a rallying call to South Africa to be sharp – “to make better decisions when it comes to alcohol consumption that will ultimately build a nation we can all be proud of”.
This call is encapsulated in the SA Be Sharp Charter, a manifesto of SAB’s commitment to championing responsibility which includes a citizen’s commitment that South Africans can sign up to on the SAB website.
In a statement on December 1, SAB said it believes “harmful consumption of alcohol is bad for our consumers, our colleagues, our families, our communities and our business”.
“That means, we take seriously our responsibility to help reduce and prevent the harmful use of alcohol. As a global company, we are well placed to launch platforms like this to ensure we continue to play our part in confronting the irresponsible consumption of our products and measure ourselves against the tangible and aggressive targets we set.”
SAB corporate affairs VP Zoleka Lisa said SAB was moving to actively drive change through partnerships with government, key stakeholders, communities and tavern owners.
“Beer has been a special part of South African heritage and culture for many years, and, as SAB, we firmly believe that every experience with beer should be a positive one. This belief requires us to encourage and enable the growth of thriving communities where harmful drinking no longer presents a social challenge.”
She explained that the SAB Sharp commitments and programmes are designed to get South Africans to consume alcohol responsibly as they “Live, Drive, Talk and Sell Sharp”.
The new SAB Sharp platform will enable SAB to run interventions that can accelerate the curbing of irresponsible consumption of alcohol at scale and with pace, leveraging partnerships with government, communities, civil society retailers, tavern owners and media agencies.
“To create the kind of country we want to live in, we acknowledge the societal ills caused by irresponsible consumption of alcohol, and we are committed to be at the forefront of changing the way the nation behaves when they are selling, buying our enjoying our beers,” said Lisa.
The launch of SAB Sharp is part of the company’s five-year plan to create a safer and smarter drinking culture.
The SAB Sharp platform will drive tangible results in SAB’s delivery of programmes that focus on four specific pillars of responsibility, namely responsible communities, responsible driving, responsible marketing, and responsible trading.
SAB has put in place tangible goals that will serve to focus its efforts to address the abovementioned societal ills.
The brewer has also rolled out a Responsible Trading Programme to 30 000 retailers, which is aimed at ensuring that retailers are held accountable in terms of compliance criteria that ensure that they trade responsibly by not selling to underage individuals, besides others.
SAB further envisages the rollout of ten gender-based violence centres across the country by 2025.