Governments medical chief unveils minimum alcohol price plans

The Governments chief medical adviser is set to unveil plans today (March 16) that could include a minimum price for alcohol being set.

The Government’s chief medical adviser is set to unveil plans today (March 16) that could include a minimum price for alcohol being set.

Chief medical officer Sir Liam Donaldson is reportedly to state that no drink should be sold for less than 50p per unit of alcohol in a number of measures aimed at tackling the UK’s alcohol misuse problem.

The move follows the measures proposed by the Scottish Government earlier this month that include plans for minimum pricing and a ban on two-for-one promotions.

According to reports yesterday (March 15) cabinet minister Douglas Alexander said the Government would consider Sir Liam’s report while a Department of Health spokeswoman says it has not ruled out taking action on very cheap alcohol.

Alcohol Concern says that setting a minimum price for alcohol would help deter youngsters from binge drinking.

Alcohol industry body The Portman Group has previously stated that measures such as those proposed by Scottish ministers punish all drinkers while only “scratching at the surface” of the drinking culture.

The news follows the recent launch of a House of Common’s health committee inquiry to look into alcohol misuse and the role of the alcohol industry and marketers.

In addition, the Department of Health’s “Safe. Sensible. Social” alcohol strategy consultation was launched last summer, which includes a proposal that advertisers be forced to include a short public health message, as an “end frame” after TV and cinema ads.

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