Sunday, 1 April 2012

Minimum support

Not surprisingly, the poll on minimum alcohol pricing resulted in a large majority against, with 80% of respondents opposing the plan. I wonder whether the 11 who voted “Yes” fell into the category of CAMRA members who believe hiking the price of multipacks of Stella in Tesco will somehow bring drinkers flooding back into pubs.

As Dick Puddlecote reports, no sooner had the government announced their plans than the bansturbators were out in force demanding that the minimum price be substantially raised.
There’s an e-petition opposing minimum pricing on the government website. I actually know someone called Chris Ward, but I don’t know whether it’s him (Edit: it’s not). So far sign-ups have been slow, but it’s early days yet. With my rudimentary MS Paint skills, I’ve designed a crappy little icon to promote it which can be seen in the left-hand sidebar. If you can do better, go ahead. E-mail me if you would like the code to put this on your blog or website.

Coincidentally, April’s Opening Times column – submitted well before the government announcement – is on the subject of minimum pricing. I wasn’t tipped off by a mole, honest. Have a read and leave a comment.


  1. We wouldn't be affected at all at Beer Ritz if it actually came into action. What I would be very worried about, is the fact that when minimum pricing is seen to fail (as it will; putting a higher price on alcohol is not going to solve the unfortunate problems of an alcoholic) the minimum cost per unit gets put up and up and up year on year, till no one actually buys alcohol anymore, and we make and sell it illegally.

  2. It would be interesting, Ghostie, to find out the lowest unit price at which alcohol is sold in Beer Ritz. I've bought some cheapo Belgian pilsner at 40p/unit in the Bottle Stop in Bramhall, my local specialist offie.

    And, of course, once introduced, the "minimum price escalator" will inevitably apply.

  3. If you can't afford pub prices now, you still won't be able to if supermarkets have to charge more. CAMRA's support for the minimum price is both self-serving and self-defeating.

  4. RedNev. I don't think it is self serving, but it is the result of dodgy thinking.

  5. If it morally correct to prohibit the poor from boozing it is just as correct to prohibit beards from boozing. Where is the total prohibition petition?

  6. Sorry, TM, but I'm not sure I agree. CAMRA believes minimum pricing will encourage more people to go to pubs, but the government intends the measure to encourage "responsible drinking", not increased pub going. So we are supporting the proposal to further our own ends.

    However, "dodgy thinking" is right.

    Cooking Lager: I agree completely. Apparently this disgraceful government believes the rich can be trusted with their binge drinking, and that only the poor are a danger to law & order and a burden on the NHS.

  7. I don't really know Mudgie. I do know our beers are given the same price mark up across the whole range, so how much we sell them for inevitably is down to how much we get charged for them. A couple of examples though: Tyskie - 500ml bottle, 2.8 units: £2.29. Durham Temptation - 500ml bottle, 5 units: £5.39 (thanks a lot HSBD!)

  8. Red Nev- Isn't that because the rich can afford all thr private healthare they want?

  9. I think it is related to the current social acceptability to despise the poor, as evident by the prevelance of the word "chav" in modern parlance. Prosperity has always brought an attempt at sophistication and along with it the view that those down the ladder are vulgar. In the 60's this changed and such views were considered snobbery. This lasted until about midway through the noughties. We are back to a 50's or even Victorian view of social class with the poor being feckless, stupid and in need of either a slap or paternalistic concern depending on your own opinion.

  10. mock campaign logo now ready if you want to email me

    think you'll like it ...


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