Nigerian Breweries makes first statement on CPC investigation on health claims made at beer symposium
Nigerian Breweries Plc said on Friday it had received a notice from the Consumer Protection Council (CPC) about an ongoing investigation launched by the agency on the “veracity of claims regarding the health benefits of beer consumption” made by the company at the recently held Third Annual Beer Symposium.
In a statement released to the Nigerian Stock Exchange and signed by the company’s Corporate Affairs Adviser, Kufre Ekanem, Nigerian Breweries acknowledged the receipt of a notification from the CPC on an investigation recently opened by the agency to verify the accuracy of claims allegedly made by the company on the health benefits of beer at the symposium.
Mr. Ekanem stated that the beer symposium was set up to share available and scientifically verifiable knowledge with the public on the health benefits of beer and allow for a robust debate. He denied the company was using the symposium to promote its brands or influence the contents of the event or teleguide the media coverage.
“No brand claims were made at the 3rd Nigerian Beer Symposium because, by design, the discussions there are not about specific brands nor their particular attributive values. Rather, the sessions discuss the beer category as a whole and create space for the presentation of verifiable facts on beer we believe our stakeholders should be aware of. Beyond inviting the subject matter experts and creating the platform, we do not influence the contents and thrusts of their presentations at the symposia. We also do not issue press releases nor teleguide the media coverage for the symposia thereafter,” Ekanem said.
The Corporate Adviser noted that as a corporate citizen, Nigerian Breweries recognizes that drinking is a matter of personal choice and the company has a long heritage of advocating responsible drinking and has ongoing partnerships with government institutions in that respect.
He noted that the company has been in communication with the CPC to understand their concerns and will make a formal response to issues raised in the notice within the timeframe provided.