Beer has some new competition in football.
The National Football League announced this week that is has ended its ban on advertising for hard liquor. This will allow whiskey, vodka, rum and other spirits to promote products during games in the 2017 season and beyond.
“This is welcomed news but not too surprising given spirits companies have partnered with individual NFL teams, and other major professional sports leagues began accepting spirits advertising more than a decade ago,” says Distilled Spirits Council President & CEO Kraig R. Naasz. “Adult fans realize alcohol is alcohol and our responsible spirits sports marketing has been met with broad public acceptance.”
An NFL league spokesman described the rules change as a “2017 NFL season test.” Liquor ads will operate under limitations to start. Only four 30-second liquor ads can run during a game, with a max of two per quarter or halftime.
Football themes are not allowed in the ads, nor are team sponsorships of liquor brands. Ads must have a “prominent social responsibility message,” according to the spokesperson, and at least 1/5 of ads that run must “consist exclusively of social responsibility messaging.” Beer does not face similar restrictions.