More pathetic appeasement here from Greene King expressing support for a 45-50p per unit minimum price for alcohol. This is a classic case of trying to get the government to penalise other sections of the industry in the hope that you might benefit from it. For all their weasel words about promoting responsible drinking, it’s really naked self-interest.
It will all end in tears, of course, as the idea that “responsible” pubs will somehow be immune from anti-drink policies is frankly delusional. Indeed, I’ve argued before that, the more alcohol is denormalised, the more its consumption will retreat from public to private spaces. I’ve also had Greene King products for well below 50p/unit as part of supermarket offers. Perhaps they should put their money where their mouth is and stop supplying Tesco. Anyway, yet another reason not to drink their beers.
The comment from Publican Sam (an occasional commenter on here) is well worth reading:
Well there's a surprise then, GK wouldn't welcome additional trade from north of the border ... even with such low representation in the Scottish market.
Minimum price should be fought at all costs, if for no other reason that the introduction of yet another 'stealth tax' on our industry once introduced will, on all probability, not be relinquished by hard-pressed Chancellors of whatever political hue.
Others have pointed out, and I will agree with them, that this might inevitably then lead to a minimum price 'escalator' and we all know what damage the duty escalator has done to the brewing and pub industry.
We are a disparate bunch with competing interests in the hospitality industry and GK are a prime example of this being both producer, managed operator and property landlord and until we can, with a united voice, say "enough is enough" then the nuMPties will continue to clobber us.