After Proposing Alcohol Branding Ban, Scottish National Party Releases Branded Alcohol and Drinkware
The Scottish National Party is drawing criticism after selling branded bottles of whiskey, gin and vodka with the "Yes" logo of its pro-Scottish-independence movement.
Ordinarily, this wouldn't be anything out of the ordinary. But the Scottish government, currently led by SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon, just released a study into the effects of alcohol branding, and weighed the possibility of outlawing branding on alcohol labels and prohibiting alcoholic beverage brands from creating promotional products.
So, this obviously looks a little hypocritical.
The SNP site is currently selling a full line of "Yes" spirits, in addition to Glencairn whiskey glasses and a hip flask gift set with the "Yes" logo engraved on the flask.
Scottish MP Jamie Halcro Johnston took to Twitter to voice his indignation.
The SNP plasters ‘Yes’ all over their own branded spirits at the same time as threatening to say ‘No’ to all future alcohol advertising. https://t.co/uK0bDQgrIG
— Jamie Halcro Johnston MSP (@jhalcrojohnston) February 13, 2023
"It is ironic that at a time when the SNP are undermining our scotch whiskey industry by threatening to close down their merchandise sales, they are trying to raise funds by producing their own branded products," Scottish Liberal Democrat MP Alistair Carmichael said, according to the Scottish Sun.
Critics of the Scottish government's proposal said that outlawing branded products would not only affect the country's famous distilleries and breweries, but impact its tourism revenue, too, as people might be less likely to go to small towns to visit distilleries and buy merchandise.
"Every single brewer in this country has merchandise that boasts their product," Scott Begbie wrote for the Press and Journal at the time. "It’s a vital revenue stream, and a way to promote their business."
So, for the government to specifically bring up the idea of banning alcohol as a branding effort to then use it for its own gain is a bad look.