The head of New Zealand Drug Foundation is standing behind his tongue-in-cheek comment that Alcohol Advisory Council staff were drinking out of yard glasses at a work function.

Executive director Ross Bell took to Twitter during an Alac gathering at Karaka Cafe in Wellington on Friday.

The organisation was saying goodbye to its origins as it merges into the newly established Health Promotion Agency today.

Bell tweeted: "Staff at Alac farewell function celebrating by doing a #yardglass each. #thewaywearedrinking #easeuptonthedrink."

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Alac spokeswoman Lynne Walsh said she didn't find it funny and confirmed there were no yard glasses at the function.

Bell said the tweet was a joke which the majority of his followers would have appreciated.