Sir Rod Stewart in win against cancel culture as complaints singer's whisky 'appealed to children' dismissed

Sir Rod Stewart in win against cancel culture as complaints singer's whisky 'appealed to children' dismissed

WATCH NOW: Rod Stewart performs at Jools Holland's Hootennany on New Year's Eve

BBC
Alex Davies

By Alex Davies


Published: 17/01/2024

- 09:21

A complaints panel did not uphold a complaint against Wolfie's Whisky

Rod Stewart's whisky brand Wolfie's Whisky has not had a complaint regarding its packaging upheld after a member of the public raised concerns to the alcohol industry’s Independent Complaint Panel (ICP).

The complainant claimed the alcoholic spirit "could have particular appeal to children under Code rule 3.2", according to Portman Group.


Wolfie's Whisky, which was co-founded by the rocker last year, features a cartoon wolf winking on the bottle donning a top hat with a playing card positioned on the rim.

The complaint wasn't upheld by the panel, however, with Chair of the Independent Complaints Panel, Rachel Childs saying of the decision: "It’s vitally important under the Code that producers ensure their products do not have particular appeal to under-18s, or encourage bravado or irresponsible consumption.

"In this case, the Panel concluded the cartoon wolf was presented in a way which created separation from contemporary children’s cartoons and, combined with other elements on the packaging which were typical of spirit products, did not have particular appeal to under-18s."

The complaint against Stewart's spirit brand also mentioned how the text and use of the word "rascal" on its packaging could "encourage bravado under Code rule 3.2(b) and irresponsible consumption under Code rule 3.2(f)".

Once again, this wasn't upheld as the ICP ruled the term "rascal" was merely used to refer to mischievous characteristics rather than a call to action.

The panel also ruled that the fact Stewart collaborated with the project didn't encourage irresponsible consumption.

Stewart hasn't publicly addressed the decision but fellow co-founder of Wolfie’s Whisky, Duncan Frew, told Portman Group: "We’ve taken great care while building every element of the Wolfie’s Whisky brand over the last two years.

"Having worked closely with the Portman Group to ensure our marketing and branding is on the right side of the Group’s guidelines, we are pleased with the outcome of this situation."

Wolfie's Whisky was launched in 2023 in both the UK and US and, writing on the spirit's website, was clearly a nostalgic project for Stewart.

The 79-year-old said of the brand: "For me, Wolfie's depicts the carefree behaviour of my more mischievous days and the excitement of what life still has to offer - let the good times roll!"

GB News has contacted Wolfie's Whisky for comment.

It isn't the first time Stewart has been in the news in recent weeks as he hit headlines for his performance on Jools Holland's New Years Eve extravaganza, Hootenanny.

Rod Stewart

Rod Stewart with a case of his Wolfie's Whisky

INSTAGRAM/ROD STEWART

Stewart put on several show-stopping performances while Holland played the piano but it wasn't his vocal talents which caught the eye.

Instead, social media was flooded by fans who couldn't help but comment on Stewart's appearance - with many comparing him to Michael Keaton's Beetlejuice from the 1988 classic film of the same name.

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