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UK: WSTA slams 80p minimum alcohol unit price

03 July, 2009

UK: The Wine and Spirit Trade Association has hit out at a top police officer’s call for an 80p per unit minimum on alcohol.

Association of Chief Police Officers national spokesman on licensing Mike Craik said the current recommended level of 50p was not enough.

At a Westminster Food and Nutrition Forum on Alcohol, Craik said: “80p is about right - that makes a 19 per cent reduction in consumption.”

But the WSTA said this would make a  bottle of wine at least £8.

The trade association said in a statement: “A minimum price set at 80p equates to £8 for a bottle of wine.  Only 3% of British consumers spend this much and more on a bottle of wine.”

The average price for a bottle of wine is currently £4.25.

Jeremy Beadles, chief executive of the WSTA, said:  "A minimum price of 80p per unit would punish 97% of British wine drinkers at a stroke.  What is the aim here - tackling alcohol misuse or putting wine beyond the reach of ordinary people?"