Red Stripe is rolling out a new raspberry-flavored, low-alcohol-content beer in Jamaica geared primarily toward 18- to 24-year-old women, and watchdog groups in the U.S. are freaking out. Admittedly, "Red Stripe Burst" sounds like a Gushers-type candy, but in Jamaica, where the drinking age is 18, it's apparently a perfectly acceptable name for such a "recruitment-driven" beverage. Advocacy group Alcohol Justice says such "alcopops" are nothing but "cocktails on training wheels," however, and is warning parent company Diageo to keep Red Stripe Burst out of the grubby grip of American teens.
Meanwhile, a new study reports that one in four alcohol-company ads violates voluntary industry rules against targeting underage viewers during commercial breaks of shows like Keeping Up With the Kardashians. But some disagree: The study "is rooted in shaky ground," says the president of something called the Beer Institute, pointing to a research statistic indicating underage drinking is at an all-time low, which, ironically, happens to be posted behind an age gate on the Anheuser-Busch InBev site.
Red Stripe creates raspberry beer for young drinkers [Jamaica Gleaner]
Diageo Admits Targeting 18-24 Year Olds for Red Stripe Alcopop [Alcohol Justice]
Study: Booze Industry Breaks its Own Underage Ad Rules [AdAge]