THE Department of Trade and Industry (dti) has urged the liquor industry to drive programmes that will change South Africa’s drinking culture.
Chief Director of the National Liquor Authority (NLA), Prea Ramdhuny was speaking at the department’s event to observe Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Day in the Northern Cape on Friday. Research conducted has shown the Northern Cape has a high prevalence of Foetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS).
Ramdhuny stressed that government, civil society and corporates have a responsibility to collectively eradicate the scourge of alcohol abuse.
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FASD is a group of conditions that occur in an individual whose mother consumed alcohol during pregnancy, with FAS being the most severe form of the condition.
Problems in children with FAS may include an abnormal appearance, short height, low body weight, small head size, poor coordination, behavioural problems and problems with hearing and sight.
Ramdhuny urged society to invest in and protect children from alcohol abuse by intensifying awareness about the harmful effects of alcohol abuse during pregnancy.
Ramdhuny’s comments came ahead of the commemoration of FASD Awareness Day, which is marked around the world annually on 9 September. The day was first commemorated in 1999 as a day where the world remembers that in the nine months of pregnancy, a woman should abstain from having any alcohol.
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