A frequency and content analysis of alcohol advertising on Brazilian television

J Stud Alcohol. 1999 May;60(3):394-9. doi: 10.15288/jsa.1999.60.394.


Objective: Two studies were conducted with the objective of analyzing the frequency and content of alcoholic beverage advertising on Brazilian television.

Method: Study 1 presents a frequency analysis based on 84 hours of TV monitoring in which 1,640 commercials and 243 vignettes were recorded between 8:00 PM and 11:00 PM on the two main stations. Study 2 presents a content analysis of 139 alcoholic and 51 nonalcoholic beverage commercials aired in 1992-93, as evaluated by three trained judges.

Results: Study 1 showed the relative frequency of alcoholic beverage commercials (4.6%) to be higher than the frequency of other products such as cigarettes, nonalcoholic beverages and medicines, and lower than that of foods and various other items. Frequency of alcoholic "vignettes" (26.6%) was higher than the frequency of all the other product categories. Frequency data were closely matched by marketing investment data for the period. In Study 2, the most frequent themes and appeals present in alcohol commercials were relaxation, national symbolism, conformity, camaraderie and humor. Human models were present in most ads. Product-related themes such as information, quality or tradition were virtually absent, as were messages to drink moderately. However, 7.2% of the alcohol commercials displayed appeals promoting abusive drinking.

Conclusions: The results seem to reflect the minimal regulation of alcohol advertising in Brazil, and a joint effort by health planners, educators, legislators, alcohol industries and advertising agencies is recommended as a necessary step to reduce alcoholic beverage problems in Brazilian society.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Advertising / economics
  • Advertising / statistics & numerical data*
  • Alcoholic Beverages*
  • Brazil / ethnology
  • Humans