World news story

Know your poison?

Methanol Poisoning Awareness Campaign: British Consulate Bali.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Methanol Poisoning Awareness Campaign
Methanol Poisoning Awareness Campaign

Indonesia is a popular destination for many tourists.

  • In the first quarter of 2014, almost 50,000 British people visited Indonesia.

  • In September 2014, Garuda launched direct flights from Jakarta to London Gatwick.

  • In August 2014, over 13,000 British people arrived in Bali.

Most visits to Indonesia are trouble free…

…but do you know your poison?

Methanol poisoning is a growing concern in Indonesia, with figures suggesting that 280 people have died from illicit alcohol poisoning since 2011.

  • Figures indicate that 51 people died in 2013 and 52 were hospitalised as a result of consuming illicit alcohol*.

  • There have been 3 known UK deaths as a result of methanol poisoning in the last 5 years.

On October 10th 2014, the British Consulate in Bali launched a Methanol Poisoning Awareness Campaign (MPA).

Methanol Poisoning Awareness Campaign
Methanol Poisoning Awareness Campaign

Acting Ambassador Rebecca Razavi met with the Governor of Bali, Mr I Made Mangku Pastika, to formally present the campaign.

Acting Ambassador Razavi said:

This campaign underlines the importance of British tourists being aware of health risks of counterfeit alcohol. No holiday – to anywhere in the world – should end in tragedy. One death due to counterfeit alcohol is one too many. So we will work with the Bali Provincial administration and the many responsible and reputable retailers in Indonesia, to try and eradicate this risk to people’s life and health.

Travellers to Bali will see branded materials such as posters and leaflets in hotels, bars, restaurants and at the airport. These feature important contact information for visitors to use in case of suspected methanol poisoning and use the slogans:

  • Know your poison - Be aware of methanol poisoning.

  • Keep it real - If the price of your alcoholic drink looks too good to be true, it probably is.

  • Seal the deal - Buy alcoholic drinks from a reputable vendor and check bottle seals are intact.

The campaign will also feature events with local stakeholders, such as Balinese musicians and singers, and a short video to familiarise travellers with the risks of consuming counterfeit alcohol in Indonesia. You can follow our campaign at:

Methanol Poisoning Awareness Campaign
Methanol Poisoning Awareness Campaign

*Source: Edelman Indonesia, February 2014

Published 13 November 2014