Aim This paper analyses a partnership between an addiction agency and the drinks industry in Australia, with special reference to concerns held by public health advocates for such projects.
Method Public health anxieties regarding collaboration between the drugs sector and the drinks industry are identified. A projected partnership between the Alcohol and Drug Foundation—Queensland (ADFQ) and the liquor industry in Australia is reviewed. The partnership involves the creation of a new organization, Alcohol Education Australia Ltd. (AEA), which states as its aim the education of consumers in responsible drinking. In order to assess the impact of the partnership an examination is undertaken of the AEA's stated mission and objectives, of relevant policy development by ADFQ and of ADFQ's intervention in support of an alcohol manufacturer which was putting a case to a licensing authority.
Findings The results indicate the partnership advances the interests of the drinks industry rather than public health. The mission and objectives of Alcohol Education Australia Ltd subordinate public health goals to industry aims and the host organization, the ADFQ, has changed its policy and practice to accommodate the drinks industry.
Conclusion The partnership between the ADFQ and the drinks industry indicates the difficulty faced by addiction organizations in maintaining an uncompromising public health orientation when in partnership with the alcohol industry.