You know what you drink: employing mobile application for reducing alcohol related harm

The Nutrition institute, in cooperation with the Slovenian Consumers' Association, the Jožef Stefan Institute and the National Institute of Public Health, has launched a new research programme "You know what you drink: employing mobile application for reducing alcohol related harm". Information on the composition and nutritional value of alcoholic beverages is not mandatory under the current legislation, but consumers are very interested in this type of labelling, which is useful not only to inform about the composition of beverages, but also to raise awareness about reducing alcohol related harm. As part of the "You Know What You Drink" programme, we will address these challenges and raise awareness about the composition of alcoholic beverages as well as risky and harmful use of alcohol. This will help monitor and implement effective alcohol policy measures which will contribute to minimize alcohol use in the population and influence society's relationship towards alcohol use. The program is co-financed by the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Slovenia. 

Co-financed by:

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You know what you drink: employing mobile application for reducing alcohol related harm

Participating organisations:


Programme duration:

  • 2019 - 2022

Programme description:

Alcohol drinking among adults and adolescents is a serious public health issue in Slovenia. According to National institute for public health data, despite prohibition of selling alcoholic beverages to minors, 40 % of 15-year olds already tried alcoholic beverages and 43 % of adults aged 25-64 are risky drinkers. Also, in recent years, higher proportion of young women who are risky drinkers is noticed. 43 % of adults are risky drinkers which means that they have a higher probability of social, health and other consequences that are linked to alcohol abuse. In Slovenia, consumption of alcohol per individual is far above the European average. Awareness and information programmes are an indispensable part of a comprehensive policy aimed at minimizing alcohol consumption through. In the scope of proposed programme, comprehensive informing by newly developed communication channel - mobile application "You know what you drink" is established.

The reason, why individuals are interested in composition of alcoholic beverages, originates in current labelling legislation of such products. According to EU Regulation 1169/2011 on the provision of food information to consumers, labelling of list of ingredients and nutrition value are not mandatory on alcoholic beverages. Many recent studies confirmed consumers' interest in such information and information on risks of excessive alcohol consumption, WHO and European parliament reccommend update of the legislation as well. Consumers' interest in alcoholic beverage composition can be used not only to provide information on the composition of such beverages but also to inform them about the risks of excess drinking and therefore minimize consequences of risky drinking. Regarding the fact that application can be used from anywhere, this does not only means informing single users but also their companions.

The result of the proposed programme will be an upgrade and promotion of mobile application "You know what you eat" with the aim to inform individuals on alcoholic beverage composition and informing about consequences of risky drinking and alcohol abuse.

Key activities of the proposed programme: 

  • (1) collecting composition data on the most popular alcoholic beverages
  • (2) development of protocol for complementing data on alcoholic beverage composition which will, in the case of missing data, allow credible estimation of energy value regarding the type of alcoholic beverage and alcohol content
  • (3) cooperation of stakeholders and financer in preparation of short and clear messages to include in mobile application with the purpose of informing about consequences of risky drinking and alcohol abuse
  • (4) development of upgrade of application "You know what you eat", where an option of insight into alcoholic beverages composition will be added, and user will gain insight also in alcohol content and energy value, with accompanying messages
  • (5) active promotion of programme and application among key target groups

Applicants of the programme are also contractors of the programme IRIO 2019-2022 which was financed by Slovenian Ministry of health. In the scope of this programme free mobile application "Do you know what you eat" wa slaunched. The puropse of this aplication is to encourage consumers in choosing foods with more favourable nutritional composition. User of the application scans barcode of a certain food product with his smartphone camera and application returns interpretation of information on nutritional value of the product. Data is derived from an extensive database of foods which includes more than 23.000 prepacked food and drink products. Analysis of user behavior showed surprising gaps which served as the basis for preparation of this programme. We noticed that alcoholic beverages were among most searched products but application "Do you know what you drink" does not include them yet and therefore does not provide any useful data and information about such products. 40 % of several thousands searches was on alcoholic beverages. This shows that consumers are interested in such content information, so an upgrade of this application will not only serve as an information channel but also as channel for informing users on risks of excessive drinking. Scientific research data show that informing is the most effective in situations where an individual searches information on specific product. Promotion with advertisements, flyers and billboards was shown to be less effective as it adresses consumers when they are not the most perceptive.


More information:

  • Nutrition institute, Tržaška cesta 40, 1000 Ljubljana - e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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Nutrition institute is engaged in research and education in the field of nutrition and advising the food industry in the formulation and labeling of foods. In the scope of the institute, research group Healthy Nutrition is established, which performs research on food and nutrition.