“Super strength” lagers to be taxed more

The Government has confirmed that it will increase duty on so-called “super-strength” lagers in a bid to tackle problem drinking.

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Duty on beers with an ABV above 7.5% will be subject to an additional duty from next year, the Treasury has announced.

In addition, duty on beers with a 2.8% ABV or below will be reduced, “to encourage the production and consumption” of low and no alcohol beers.

No details of the additional duty were given. The Treasury adds that the “measures will continue to be developed” with further details to be announced in next year’s budget.

Molson Coors had called on the Government to provide the low and no alcohol category with a “short-term stimulus” by reducing tax.

The commitment to increase duty on some beer follows a wider consultation, with the Home Office, on the Government’s alcohol strategy that included proposals to ban the sale of alcohol below cost price.

Yesterday (30 November), a Department of Health white paper on public health strategy said it is “committed” to implementing a ban on below cost selling “without delay”.

“The Government will continue to work with all interested groups to monitor and assess the available evidence about alcohol consumption,” the Treasury says.

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