Responsible Marketing

Our Basic Policy on Product Labeling and Advertising

The Asahi Group conducts responsible marketing with regard to product package labeling and advertising activities, striving for labeling and expressions that are trusted by customers. As such, starting with our compliance with the related laws and regulations*, we pay heed to alcohol-related issues such as drinking by under-aged (less than 20 years of age) as well as to safety, human rights issues, environmental issues, and social ethics. We pay great attention to appropriate labeling and expressions.

*In addition to Food Sanitation Act, The Food Labeling Act (including “Food Labeling Standards” defined by this law), Health Promotion Act, Act for Standardization and Proper Labeling of Agricultural and Forestry Products, Liquor Tax Act, Act Concerning Liquor Business Associations, Antimonopoly Act, Act against Unjustifiable Premiums and Misleading Representations, fair competition code, etc.

Related Information

Examination of Labeling and Expressions

At the Asahi Group, we have established a body for the screening and examination of labeling and expressions used on sales promotional materials for products and giveaways, and advertising material from multiple perspectives. Screening involves the investigation of the appropriateness of labeling and expressions from diverse viewpoints including individual laws and regulations, safety, social responsibility, environmental issues and discrimination problems. Potential risks and problems are detected and advice is given in the form of proposals for improvement, and only products and advertising materials that have been screened are released on the market.
Employees involved in the screening and examination of labeling and expressions attend training sessions to communicate the important information that all staff involved in these processes should be aware of, including information on recent legal revisions related to product labelling and advertising self-regulations.

Alcohol Beverages business

Asahi Breweries Ltd. established the Labeling and Expression Review Examination Board in 1995 as the body to review and examine labeling and expressions in advertising materials from multiple perspectives. In 2001, the screening of products and promotional material were added to the Board’s responsibilities, and enhancements have been made in such aspects as the Board’s functions, its membership, and the system to follow up on its findings. Today, the Board conducts reviews from the diverse perspectives of its members drawn from planning and production sections responsible for new product development, advertising, and sales promotion, as well as those from sections engaged in legal matters, trademark protection, quality assurance, customer relations, environment ARP, and manufacturing. The Board meets weekly, and only products and advertising material that have been screened are released onto the market. All issues identified by the Board are recorded in its minutes, including reports on remedial measures by relevant sections, and the minutes are utilized in daily business activities.

Meetings of the Labeling and Expression Review Examination Board (Asahi Breweries, Ltd.)
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Number of Meetings 50 49 48 48 49
Number of Draft Proposals 2,429 2,614 2,858 3,058 2,786
Issues requiring further reporting 298 315 341 351 311

Asahi Breweries Europe has established an “ABE Group Policy on Commercial Communication” and conducts reviews of all commercial communication including labeling and packaging from the perspective of ensuring compliance with relevant lows, regulations and self-regulations pertaining to alcohol beverages. The policy stipulates the composition of the Sales and Marketing Compliance Committee , review procedures, and training for relevant employees.

Soft drinks business

In the labeling of products and representations in advertising, Asahi Soft Drinks Co., Ltd. complies with related laws and regulations as well as company standards and guidelines established by an internal team specializing in labeling. It is working toward labeling that is easy to understand for customers, and for matters requiring attention, labeling that stands out and is easily recognizable.

Cautionary labeling

To ensure that customers can safely enjoy the company's products without worry, product packages carry some cautionary notes. For example, products sold in PET bottles carry notes such as "Consume shortly after opening" and "Avoid freezing or placing strong force on the bottle." Canned products may carry warnings that they should not be placed on a stove or an open flame. Matters requiring special attention are displayed using large print or in a contrasting color to make them stand out.

Food allergen labeling

Asahi Soft Drinks Co., Ltd. labels its products on the use of the seven specified ingredients subject to mandatory allergen labeling as well as the 21 specified ingredients recommended for labeling. In addition, a list that consumers can consult to verify the use of the 27 specified ingredients for allergen labeling is provided on the company's website.

Universal labeling

Asahi Soft Drinks Co., Ltd. has incorporated universal design into various products so that a large number of people can enjoy its products regardless of their age, build, or physical ability. In product package labeling, care is taken to use colors that ensure information is accurately conveyed to everyone including people who perceive color differently than others.

Food business

Asahi Group Foods, Ltd. has established a Labeling Committee consisting of members drawn from management, research and development, marketing, legal affairs, quality assurance, customer relations, and other sections. The committee checks labeling and expressions of each product and advertisement. The company is working toward labeling and expressions that are compatible with various applicable laws and regulations and are understood easily and trusted by customers.

The company also has a Quality Assurance (QA) Committee, which meets regularly to share quality complaints received from customers, analyze their causes, and develop measures for improvement. The QA Committee is chaired by the president and consists of members of corporate management as well as all senior general managers, and it is striving to further improve quality.

Initiatives implemented by Group companies:

Labeling and Advertising Efforts

Examples of legally required and/or voluntary labeling and expressions on product packages (Asahi Breweries, Ltd.)
Topic Content
Recycling Mark Recycling mark indicates that packaging material can be recycled and encourages active support for reuse and recycling.
Warning against drinking while pregnant, breastfeeding, or under-aged (less than 20 years of age) We display warnings against drinking by pregnant and breastfeeding women in addition to the expression, “You are not permitted to drink alcoholic beverages if you are under-aged (less than 20 years of age).”
Braille To assist visually challenged customers so that they do not accidentally drink alcoholic beverages without intending to, we have put the Braille for “alcohol” on the top of all canned alcoholic products.
“Alcohol” label shown on can packages “Alcohol” is displayed in large letters so that customers who are under-aged (less than 20 years of age) or those who cannot drink alcohol do not confuse these for soft drinks.

Our Response to Food Allergy

Food Allergen Labeling

At the Asahi Group, we verify with the ingredient manufacturers and suppliers for any use of the seven specified ingredients subject to mandatory allergen labeling under the Food Labeling Standards as well as the 21 specified ingredients recommended for allergen labeling, and we strive for appropriate labeling. In September 2019, almonds were added to the list of ingredients recommended for allergen labeling, and we will begin indicating it as such as soon as preparations are complete.

  • Seven specified ingredients subject to mandatory allergen labeling: egg, milk, wheat, buckwheat, peanuts, shrimp, and crab.
  • 21 specified ingredients recommended for allergen labeling: apple, orange, soy, sesame, etc.

In addition, at the Group Quality Conference, information on any move to review laws and regulations on allergen labeling will be shared with each Group company. Although allergen labeling is not required for alcohol, we strive for easy-to-understand labeling.

Allergen-Free Products

Asahi Group Foods, Ltd. offers a variety of products free of the seven specified ingredients under its Goo-Goo Kitchen and Eiyo Marche lines of baby food. Products that do contain any of the seven specified ingredients carry large notifications on the package fronts, and a searchable allergen database is available on the company’s website. In these and other ways, we are striving to address the needs of children with allergies.

Allergen-Free Products
Related Information (labeling for allergic ingredients contained in each product)

Our Basic Policy on Genetic Modification

The Asahi Group complies with the national laws and regulations in all the countries and regions in which it operates regarding the use and labeling of genetically modified agricultural products and processed foods made from these.
We verify information on the genetic modification of agricultural raw materials and processed agricultural materials that are being considered for use. In addition, decisions about the use and labeling of products are made in accordance with each country’s laws and regulations regarding the use and labeling of genetically modified materials in foods.

Employee education and training

To pursue responsible marketing, the Asahi Group offers training and education to employees engaged in related operations.

Alcohol beverages business

Asahi Breweries Ltd. holds workshops for employees newly appointed to marketing positions on compliance as it pertains to marketing and on laws and regulations related to labeling and expressions. The company also shares issues identified by the Labeling and Expression Review Examination Board with relevant sections as needed.

Soft drinks business

Asahi Soft Drinks Co., Ltd. pursues quality assurance activities on an organizational level through each employee's own skills development and resulting job expertise. With the aim of training personnel that can support quality, the company provides various training opportunities to raise the level of knowledge on quality and to enhance employee awareness that quality comes first. Specifically, training sessions are conducted on such themes as product knowledge and various laws and regulations, premiums and advertisements, and content of consumer promotions, and employees from sales and various other sections have participated.

Food business

At Asahi Group Foods, Ltd., departmental workshops are held under such themes as updates on labeling-related laws, regulations, and rules, as well as knowledge-sharing on instances of violations.