Hey Swedes, put that drink away and concentrate on your cooking!

Everyone enjoys a nice cold drink with a barbeque on a hot summer’s day, but the Swedes are renowned for being especially fond of a tipple whilst turning meat on the grill! They risk losing focus on the cooking, and at worst, destroying a premium meat like Welsh Lamb in the process.

As part of its offbeat marketing campaign for Welsh Lamb in Sweden this year, red meat agency Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) has developed the world’s first breathalyser-barbecue, the “Promillegrillen”. This is the only high-class grill of its kind, fitted with alcolocks and designed to ensure that Welsh Lamb is given the care and respect it deserves.

To start the Promillegrillen, the user must pass the sobriety test by blowing into the breathalyser. The device will only start if a low level of alcohol is detected. Periodically, the barbecue will cut off and the user will be forced to blow into the meter again to prove that they remain sober and focused on the cooking process, creating the best conditions for perfectly grilled Welsh Lamb.

The face of the promotional video created for the campaign is Welsh actor Julian Lewis Jones who has starred in UK dramas and in Clint Eastwood’s film, ‘Invictus’. The video, which can be viewed here - www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wPCFsF1l7A- has been used in digital advertising and appears on the Swedish Welsh Lamb website www.welshlamb.eu. It has already received more than 415,000 views.

HCC’s Market Development Manager, Rhys Llywelyn said: “The aim of this playful campaign was to appeal to the Swedes with humour and light-hearted entertainment. The number of views the video has received since its launch and the reaction to the campaign in Sweden strongly suggests that we hit the nail on the head and are on course to raising awareness of PGI Welsh Lamb as a fantastically versatile product that’s perfectly suited for grilling on the barbeque!

“We were pleased to work with Julian and look forward to welcoming him to our stand at the Royal Welsh Show where he will discuss the making of the video and share some of his very own barbeque favourites!”

A survey amongst Swedes about alcohol habits during the summer showed that they believe a barbeque and an alcoholic drink belong together. The results indicated that 30% of Swedes drink more alcohol when they grill compared to using other cooking methods, and 30% drink alcohol more often during the grilling season. 36% of men always, or almost always, drink alcohol when grilling, whereas 22% of women confirmed that this was also the case.

On a more serious note, the campaign also highlights that, in addition to the risk of spoiling the meat, grilling is the cause behind a large proportion of fires and injuries reported to the fire protection authority in Sweden every year. The risk of something going wrong is obviously increased when alcohol is involved.

Rhys Llywelyn added: “Welsh Lamb’s distribution in Sweden is limited to selected stores. As a country with a high GDP and high consumption of red meat, there is potential for this market to be profitable for red meat processors from Wales. It is hoped that the campaign will increase interest and demand for the product over the coming months.”