Tesco chief backs minimum alcohol pricing plan

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Tesco chief Sir Terry Leahy backed a call for minimum pricing of alcohol today and said binge drinking was one of the most serious issues facing the country.

In an article for the Daily Telegraph, Sir Terry, chief executive of the retailer, said his company would support the Government's plans to tackle problem drinking with price controls.



The businessman's move follows a survey of his customers which found nearly 70% thought excessive drinking was one of the most serious issues facing the country, while 61% were concerned about anti-social behaviour as a result of drinking.



He told the newspaper: "We welcome the new Government's commitment to act on below-cost selling of alcohol and today I pledge that we will support Government-led action to make this happen across the UK.



"We will also support any future discussions on a minimum price for alcohol."



Sir Terry added that price hikes alone were insufficient to change the drinking culture in the UK and pledged Tesco will take a number of other steps to try to help.



He added: "We know from our experience in selling food that providing clear information to customers can help drive behaviour change.



"Putting simple information on the front of the pack about salt and fat content has led to a big increase in the sale of healthier alternatives.



"So we will now do the same for alcohol on all our own-label products, bringing the information on units of alcohol from the back label to the front.



"We will also work with branded suppliers to develop this as an industry-wide standard."

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