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The 'Not Beersies' phase of the Say Yeah, Nah campaign by Te Hiringa Hauora/Health Promotion Agency launched on 2 November 2014 and promotes water as a spoof beer brand.

It supported the work that has been done to provide people with a language to ease up - Say Yeah, Nah - and to discourage pushing alcohol on others - ‘They’re not saying no to you, they’re saying no to the beersies’.

Water is a healthy alternative to alcohol and can reduce levels of intoxication when used to help pace drinking. When marketed in the light hearted humorous style of the Say Yeah, Nah campaign, it should be seen as a fun and socially acceptable way for people to ease up.

Water is renamed as Not Beersies - ‘beersies’ being a word the target audience is already familiar with. And it's being reframed as ‘Deliciously chilled ‘Not Beersies’ water, branded, advertised and served as if a real beer but basically consisting of 100% icy fresh H2O.

Not Beersies campaign poster

Campaign poster

Not Beersies, rather than water, will contribute to popularising and normalising the drinking and serving of water in social situations.

Not Beersies offers a fun and socially acceptable way for people ease to up and still be part of the group. It is a way to moderate alcohol intake by providing people with something they can do when they refuse a drink.

There were six television commercials that each showed a beautiful slow-motion shot of a Not Beersies being poured from a bar tap - the mouth watering, lusciously clear liquid cascades down into a chilled and beaded Not Beersies pint glass. The voiceover takes a bold, cheeky, non-governmental approach to encourage consumption of Not Beersies in social drinking situations.

The advertisements are meant to be a parody of classic beer advertisements that we’re all familiar with and seem to be the staple of beer companies the world over.

Aside from television, Not Beersies advertising was seen in outdoor media (such as billboards, street posters and adshels), in bars across the country, online and in liquor stores. Some merchandise was available and Te Hiringa Hauora worked with communities to embed the messaging at a local level.

The target audience is those aged 18 to 35 who drink at medium to high-risk levels and are open to change. Secondary audiences are mates of medium and high-risk drinkers, hosts of private functions or parties and licensed premises hosts including bar staff, managers, owners and large event organisers to reach drinkers in the venues where they drink.

The Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 states that licensed venues must provide free drinking water and vessels. In addition, the legal blood alcohol limit for drivers lowered from .08 to .05 ((80 milligrams and 50 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood) on 1 December 2014. This offered an excellent opportunity for the campaign work to support those managing drinking environments to meet their new legal requirements.