Cameron backs minimum alcohol price plan

The Prime Minister says he would look “very sympathetically” at local authority moves to introduce a minimum price for alcohol but does not support a national rollout.

David Cameron
David Cameron

David Cameron says he supported councils in Greater Manchester that want to pass a bylaw to introduce a 50 pence per unit minimum to tackle binge drinking.

The Government has not previously backed minimum pricing but has pledged to ban the sale of alcohol below cost price.

Cameron told the Manchester Evening News that communities are welcome to pursue minimum pricing.

“I think the idea of councils coming together on this is a good one and we will certainly look at it very sympathetically,” he says.

Medical bodies and the Government’s own health advisors NICE back minimum pricing but most supermarkets and producers oppose it, arguing that it would unfairly penalise responsible drinkers.

Tesco, however, has said that it would support the policy if the Government decided to introduce it.

The Home Office launched a consultation last week to help define below cost sale.

Morrisons and Asda prefer a “below the cost of duty plus VAT” definition while other supermarkets want to ban sales below the cost of the invoice sent to retailers.

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