Gov’t probe into Net sale of powdered alcohol drink

The Government is to start an investigation into the sale of a powdered alcohol product, amid fears that its easy availability over the internet could encourage under-age drinking.

Industry trade body the Portman Group has also expressed concerns over this product, Sub-You, which can be found on a German website. When mixed with water, Sub-You becomes a drink with about 4.8 per cent alcohol content. Jim Minton, director of campaigns and communications, says/ “The idea does not sound as if it is compatible with responsible drinking”.

The HM Revenue & Customs is currently “obtaining” further information on Sub-You’s exact composition, method of manufacture and duty treatment.

The department says this follows questions raised in various other European countries about the product. The European Commission has also instigated an investigation into the launch of Sub-You.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport, which oversees the licensing of alcohol sales in pubs, clubs and retail outlets, says it is aware of the product, but adds: “It would be a matter for the courts to decide whether it falls within the definition of alcohol within the Licensing Act.”

Such a court case would

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