Door invoering van een minimum alcoholprijs in Schotland vreest de drankindustrie een opleving van de ’zwarte markt’. Een fles wijn gaat dan van 3 drie pond bijna 5 pond kosten. De minister van Volksgezondheid vindt dat door die minimum-prijs ‘duizenden levens’ kunnen worden gered. Overmatig drankgebruik en de fatale gevolgen daarvan heeft de Schotse regering na jarenlange discussie tot de prijsaanpak gebracht. Thedrinksbusiness meldt:
“The Scottish parliament agreed yesterday that the minimum price on a unit of alcohol from 1 May this year is to be 50 pence, with supporters calling for further increases and the drinks industry warning of a new “black market”.
Ministers in the Scottish parliament voted for minimum unit pricing (MUP) to be 50p when it is introduced later this year.
This will raise the cheapest price for a four-pack of beer from £1 to £1.78, a three litre bottle of cider from £3.59 to £11.22, a 70cl bottle of vodka from £9.97 to £13.11, Scotch from £11 to £14 and a bottle of wine from £3.09 to £4.98.
Scotland’s health secretary, Shona Robison, said that: “With alcohol on sale today in some places at just 16p per unit, we have to tackle the scourge of cheap, high-strength drink that causes so much damage to so many families. This move will save thousands of lives.”
The drinks trade has warned that the introduction of MUP risks the creation of a new “black market” for alcohol.
A statement from The Wine and Spirit Trade Association said: “There is a real concern that the implementation of a minimum unit price provides a significant incentive to trade alcohol illicitly. Minimum unit pricing will create a price differential between the production cost of a product and its retail price well in excess of the retailer margin.
“This therefore creates an incentive to sell products that will be available at wholesale in Scotland, or from other parts of the UK where the regulations do not apply, outside of legitimate retailing channels to profit while still undercutting legitimate retailers.”
Miles Beale, CEO of the WSTA, said in a statement to the drinks buisness: “A Minimum Unit Price of 50p will already increase the price of half of all alcohol sold in shops and supermarkets. Any increase beyond 50p would have an even more significant impact, particularly those on low incomes and the majority of drinkers who drink moderately.