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Alcohol-Related Problems

Efforts to Address Alcohol-Related Problems

under 20 drinking prevention activities

The Law Prohibiting Minors from Drinking was enacted in 1922 and prohibits the drinking of alcoholic beverages by persons under 20 years of age. It also imposes fines on parents and guardians who fail to prevent drinking by minors and on businesses who sell alcoholic beverages to minors. Aware of the social responsibilities of brewers, the Brewers Association of Japan works to prevent under 20 drinking as directed by the law. For example, in 1987 it formulated the Self-Governing Regulations on Beer Advertising Activities for the purpose of ensuring that the advertising activities of the brewing industry were appropriate. These regulations restrict both advertising to minors and the content of the advertising itself. For example:

  • No advertising on television and radio programming directed to minors.
  • No use of minors as the main models in advertising.
  • No advertising in media directed to minors or use of characters created for products directed to minors.
  • All newspaper and magazine advertising to bear wording indicating that under 20 drinking is prohibited.
  • No use of driving scenes, scenes associated with driving or other expressions that would encourage driving under the influence of alcohol.

Initiation of the "STOP! under 20 Drinking" Project


On October 1, 2005, the Brewers Association of Japan, together with its five member brewers, initiated the "STOP! under 20 Drinking" Project to prevent under 20 drinking.
The "STOP! under 20 Drinking" Project represents a further enhancement of under 20 drinking prevention activities that the Association and the five member brewers have been engaged in for many years. Recent years have seen renewed interest in alcohol-related problems, and in 2005, for the first time all five brewers have adopted a symbol mark and slogan. The Association looks forward to working with parents and adults to use this new project to develop new programs to prevent under 20 drinking.

Promotion of moderate drinking

Drinking patterns change together with lifestyles and today are moving away from "drinking to get drunk" to the enjoyment of alcoholic beverages as a part of everyday life.
Japan has traditionally considered alcohol to be "the best of all medicines" according to an old saying, and studies confirm that moderate drinking has health benefits. However, excessive drinking can cause a great deal of damage. Young people in particular tend to "chug-a-lug," putting them at risk for acute alcohol poisoning. For the young, alcohol is all harm and no benefit. This style of drinking does nothing for one's health and in many cases leads to death. Whatever you do, don't chug.
The Japan Health and Alcohol Incorporated Association was established in July 1980 to conduct scientific research and training on alcohol and health issues, including the promotion of moderate drinking.
The Brewers Association Japan, together with other alcoholic beverage industry associations, participates in and supports the activities of the Japan Health and Alcohol Incorporated Association as it disseminates knowledge regarding correct consumption, promotes moderate drinking, and studies the relationship between alcoholic beverages and health. We also engage in a wide range of other activities to contribute to the maintenance and enhancement of human health.


Regarding adult drinking, in 1961 Japan enacted the Law to Prevent Drunk and Disorderly Conduct.
This law regulates the behavior of people under the influence of alcohol and provides for their protective custody to help prevent the adverse impact on individuals and society from excessive drinking. An inebriated person engaging in disorderly speech or behavior in public places or while using public transportation may be subject to arrest or a small fine.
Beer is essentially a beverage which could have positive effects to health. Drink moderately and enjoy it. Don't be a nuisance.


Japan's Road Traffic Law prohibits the operation of vehicles and so on by persons who are intoxicated and also prohibits the provision of alcoholic beverages to or encouragement of drinking by persons who could potentially operate vehicles and so on.
Persons found driving drunk or intoxicated are subject to incarceration, fines and possibly revocation of their driver's license.

Drunk driving results in horrible accidents. Don't do it.


Since April 1990, vending machine sales of alcoholic beverages have been restricted to help prevent under 20 drinking and drunk driving. All vending machines selling alcoholic beverages have been required by the National Tax Agency to bear indications stating that "under 20 drinking and drunk driving are prohibited by law" and "Sales of alcoholic beverages by vending machines is prohibited from 11:00 PM to 5:00 AM."
In addition, liquor stores are also required to strictly observe sales hours under fair competition regulations.