Minimum drink pricing meets stiff opposition
Following stints with Reuters and the Press Association, Martin Hickman joined The Independent as a news editor in 2001. He became the Consumer Affairs Correspondent in September 2005 and has run the paper's trenchant campaigns on packaging, bank charges and factory-farmed chicken. He writes on subjects as diverse as food, finance, energy and fashion. With Tom Watson, he is author of a new book on the phone hacking scandal, Dial M for Murdoch - News Corporation and the Corruption of Britain.
Wednesday 28 November 2012
The Government's plans to introduce a minimum price for alcohol will be blocked by the courts, the drinks industry says.
Shops in England and Wales would be banned from charging under 45p for a unit of alcohol or from running "buy one, get one free" promotions under the scheme announced yesterday. The Government hopes the moves, which would add £3 to a cheap bottle of vodka, will reduce binge drinking and the cost of alcohol-related ill-health. However, the Wine and Spirits Trade Association says the Government will struggle to make the proposals law.
The Scottish Parliament is already facing legal challenges over its decision to introduce a 50p-per-unit minimum north of the border. Wine-producing countries such as France and Spain have protested to the European Commission that the legislation breaches EU trade law; the Scotch Whisky Association and the European Spirits Organisation have also appealed against it.
Miles Beale, head of the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, said it was "breath-taking that the Government intends pushing ahead" with its proposals. Home Office sources said the Government was monitoring the legal challenges against the Scottish minimum price and was "in discussions" with the European Commission.
- 1 Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by police in Ohio park
- 2 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 3 Naked free runner captured in breathtaking photographs above London's streets
- 4 Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
- 5 Manchester United named Premier League's loudest fans despite late push by Chelsea according to 'Smart Meter' app
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by police in Ohio park
Heroin to be prescribed to Canadian addicts by doctors
Audacious North Korean kidnap plot foiled at Paris airport as 'Asian men' attempted to bundle student onto plane
Tower Bridge glass walkway 'smashed' by night-time visitor dropping bottle of beer
Revealed: the case against Bill Cosby – through the stories of his accusers
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Green Party Caroline Lucas interview: 'We could be on the edge of something very big'
£30000 - £60000 per annum + Excellent: Austen Lloyd: Employment Solicitor - Ke...
Negotiable: Argyll Scott International: Hi All, I'm currently recruiting for t...
Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: HAMPSHIRE MARKET TOWN - A highly attr...
£23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...