Tories will overhaul alcohol unit system

22 January, 2010

Conservative plans to replace alcohol unit labelling with a system based around cl content if it wins the next election have been met with a mixed response.

It pr?omises to consult the industry ahead of any changes.

WSTA chief executive Jeremy Beadles said: “We welcome steps to encourage consumers to make informed choices and take responsibility for their own behaviour?, as well as the opportunity for businesses to be involved in shaping and implementing agreements around responsible marketing of alcohol?.”?But Tim Wilson, author of the independent industry survey The Wilson Drinks Report, said the change would do nothing to clear up consumer confusion about how much alcoh?ol drinks contain.

He said: “Replacing units with cl of alcohol will confuse the consumer even more, especially since one unit is precisely 1cl of alcohol.

“Our units system is several years old and has worked its way into our everyday understanding of how much is safe to drink.”?In its green paper, the Conservatives also outlined plans to introduce higher taxes on RTDs and superstrength beers, and a ban on loss-leading supermarket deals on alcohol.

Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling ruled out across the board minimum pricing on the grounds that it would im?pact drinks such as wine and sherry, not normally associated with problem drinkers.

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