Irshadgul News report,
A craft beverage company based in Prince Edward County, Ont., is taking a proactive approach to labeling its alcoholic beverage cans in an effort to promote transparency within the industry.
Wilda Farmhouse is situated on approximately 15 acres of land and the company produces craft beverages that are made from fermented honey and other juices.
“We have created a range of bee-friendly natural spritzers made from fermented honey and freshly squeezed juices,” said co-founder Mike Mills.
Ben Leszcz, who is also a co-founder of Wilda, said he is proposing a consumer advisory label containing three pieces of information: units of alcohol, ingredients and the carbon footprint of the product.
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“As manufacturers of alcoholic beverages we have a responsibility to inform our consumers and be transparent about what we are producing,” said Leszcz.
Earlier this month, the Canadian Center on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA) issued new guidance stating that having more than two standard drinks – the equivalent of 13.45 grams of pure alcohol – at a time is associated with increased risks.
The CCSA report is an update to Canada’s low-risk drinking guidelines that were published in 2011.
The CCSA said the harm to yourself and others is “moderate” — meaning a one in 100 risk of premature death — if you have three to six drinks. As you increase intake, the risk increases more rapidly for women than for men when they exceed six drinks per week.
“The principle we want to get at is that people have a right to know less is better, and there are harm reduction strategies that people can use to reduce the amount they drink to improve their health and wellbeing are,” said Dr. Peter Butt, co-chair of the project to develop Canada’s alcohol guidance.
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Mills said he and Laszze were paying close attention to the guidelines and looking for ways to create more transparency and education about their products.
“The idea that people don’t understand what a unit of wine is—there’s a lot of difference between something like a big, heavy glass of wine or a light spritzer,” Mills said.
One is 16.5 per cent and the other is 2.5 per cent so there is a lot of confusion.
There’s a lot of research on the potential harms of alcohol, said Taryn Grider, a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto.
“I think the more information we have the better… before, the guideline was two drinks a day and now we’re two drinks a week so a lot more research has come in recently,” she said.
“I think it’s a good thing and I think it’s in line with what we want to see in terms of regulating people’s behavior a little bit more to make it less risky overall.”
Leszcz said that Wilda has submitted a consumer advisory label proposal to Health Canada and they are currently awaiting a response.
“Whatever goes on a wine label in Ontario and Canada is heavily regulated, so any disclosures we make have to go through the necessary approval channels,” he said.
“We’re just at the beginning of that process.”
Health Canada said in a statement that “the Government of Canada is currently reviewing the (CCSA) final report, and will continue to engage with Canadians, including key stakeholders such as the CCSA, to support our government’s work on harm and risk.” may be informed.” use of alcohol.
Mills said he hopes Consumer Advisory labels become a norm in the industry.
“Why do we know so much about the food we eat and not the things we drink?” They said.
“Responsible consumption starts with education and transparency and we want our consumers to be aware of what they are consuming…. To understand how much alcohol they have on hand is a positive first step.
— With files from Saba Aziz.
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