Leeds & West Yorkshire

Turbo Shandy firm apologise over 'booze for blood' promotion

A drinks company has said a promotion where students were asked to give blood in return for alcopops was "an error of judgement".

A student, working for the Turbo Drinks Company, had invited people via Facebook to attend a donor session at Armley, Leeds, on 25 November.

After giving blood people could collect a free drink from a nearby van.

NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) said it did not condone any promotional event at donor sessions.

The Turbo Drinks Company said it employs numerous students to arrange and manage promotions for its products.

Health message concern

In this case, one of those students had thought the event in Armley would encourage more people to give blood, the company said.

Donors were given a taster bottle of Turbo Shandy, a mix of alcoholic lemonade and lager.

Nigel Tarn, from the company, said: "In this instance, one of our students in Leeds has made an error of judgement for which we apologise."

He added that when they became aware of the event they removed the promotional material from Facebook.

In a statement, the NHSBT said: "Donating blood is a completely altruistic act and NHSBT does not welcome or condone this sort of promotional activity."

The organisation also said it was concerned about the health message conveyed by the promotion.

The statement continued: "Before giving blood, donors are advised to refrain from alcohol consumption for 24 hours for their own health and wellbeing - the clear fact is that alcohol and giving blood do not mix."

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