23 May 2023 News

"Is the EU facilitating an industrial epidemic?" Eurocare event at the European Parliament

Eurocare, with support from The Lancet, is organising a high-level conference at the European Parliament in Brussels (room SPAAK 7C50, BRU) on the 27th of June 2023, 13.30 - 18.00 CEST. The event is hosted by MEP Nicolás Gonzalez Casares and the themes of the conference are the commercial determinants of health, alcohol labelling & health warnings and conflict of interest.


“Health does not begin in clinics or hospitals any more than justice begins in law courts or peace starts on the battlefield. Rather, health starts with the conditions in which we are born and raised, and in schools, streets, workplaces, homes, markets, water sources, kitchens, and in the very air we breathe”
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the World Health Organization

Evidence has been accumulating for decades on how the products and practices of some commercial actors, notably those of the transnational corporations, are responsible for escalating rates of avoidable ill health, planetary damage, and social and health inequity; these problems are increasingly referred to as the Commercial Determinants of Health (CDoH). CDoH impact on a wide range of risk factors, including smoking, air pollution, alcohol use, obesity and physical inactivity, and health outcomes, such as mental health and noncommunicable diseases. Indeed, it is now established that the production, price-setting and targeted marketing of products, such as breast-milk substitutes, unhealthy foods and drinks, tobacco and alcohol, as well as gambling lead to mental problems and addictions as well as noncommunicable diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and cancers, as well as hypertension and obesity. This high-level conference will first explain what is meant by the Commercial Determinants of Health. The conference will then explore some of the effective public health actions that could be put in place, in particular the packaging and labelling of alcohol, to counter the Commercial Determinants of health. In this context, many questions related to the lobbying and the undue influence of the corporate sector at EU and national level, especially regarding the supply and demand of unhealthy products will also be discussed.