Case for Change

Alcohol signage outside liquor stores

Alcohol signage outside licensed premises is a form of location-based outdoor promotion. Compared to mainstream forms of alcohol advertising, there is less research in relation to alcohol advertising outside alcohol retail outlets.

One study, which reviewed existing studies on this topic, found that greater exposure to advertising in local communities (and higher density of alcohol outlets) may be related to higher alcohol use, especially among adolescents.

A strong study from Chicago indicated that exposure to outdoor alcohol advertising near schools was related to young people’s future drinking intentions.  A small study in New York among African-American women found that exposure to outdoor advertising in residential neighbourhoods was related to problem drinking.  In tertiary education campuses where takeaway alcohol outlets were free from advertising (inside and outside), binge drinking rates were lower among students.

In the city of Baltimore in the United States, takeaway alcohol outlets with alcohol advertisements visible outside had 15% more violent crimes, and 28% more homicides, in the surrounding area within 1000 feet than outlets without visible alcohol advertisements.