Two recent studies have explored the extent to which 'warning' or 'responsible drinking' messages on drinks labels or in bars or pubs are noticed. Both studies firstly question the level of attention given to such messages in the first case, but also whether attention to such messages may have any effect on drinking behaviour.
The research may be considered relevant in the context of policy debates about how to support 'informed decision making' for alcohol consumers. Currently there is no legal requirement for drinks to contain health warning messages in England, but the former responsibility deal claimed it had succeeded in its pledge to meet a voluntary code on 80% of on shelf products by 2013 - a claim questioned in this BMJ piece. Whilst some public health advocates have argued that labelling requirements should be made mandatory, including calorie content, others have may see the need for action on pricing and availability as more pressing policy issues.