Tuesday, 31 January 2012

A cautionary tale

This is a sad story – but in a way grimly ironic – about a Sheffield student whose eyesight was damaged by drinking counterfeit vodka, where the shopkeeper had jokingly said when he was selling it to her “this will make you go blind”. Let us hope the shopkeeper concerned was identified and duly punished, but surely it illustrates a wider problem. The news article is accompanied by a box detailing the “alarming growth of the illegal alcohol trade,” and every time the duty escalator ratchets up another notch it will grow a little more.

If minimum alcohol pricing were to be brought in, the cheapest bottle of bona fide vodka would be £13.15. How many more Lauren Platts would that end up harming?


  1. Those countries with sky high alcohol prices do have these issues and it ought to concern us here. There is no morality in saving the poor from themselves if it turns out we have increasing issues with meths.

    Any analysis of alkies in the 50's shows meths drinkers. Doesn't occur these days. As bad as white lighting is, it's not meths.

    Though this problem is one of a dodgy off license. Could easily be a dodgy pub. Tesco is one of the least likely places to get counterfeit products.

  2. That's bad - a heck of a lot worse than white vans, booze cruises and the like. One can only assume politicians regard this as a price worth paying.

  3. Indeed a very sad tale and my anger is not with the student at all. Minimum pricing will cause this is happen more, it's bleeding obvious and yes, it won't be in Tesco. It will be in the increasing number of off-licenses who think themselves outside of the law. That said, I'm also seeing an increasing number of "license reviews" for off-licenses, mainly for under-age selling.


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