No decision yet on minimum unit pricing for alcohol – minister
THE Government has not ruled out imposing a minimum unit price on alcohol, the Community Pubs Minister insisted during a recent visit to the North-East
Conservative MP Brandon Lewis said the Government was taking its time to look at all the facts closely and would come to a considered conclusion.
Speaking during a visit to Maxim Brewery, near Houghton-le-Spring, Wearside, Mr Lewis said: “The brewers I’ve spoken to are unanimously supportive of minimum unit pricing.
“Anything that promotes being in a pub drinking rather than pre-loading is a good thing. Even if people drink sensibly at home, I’d rather have them in a pub, supporting jobs and the economy.
“A minimum price would probably help pubs. I can see why the industry is keen on it.”
But he added: “I’m not a fan of the ‘stick’.
“Education and the ‘carrot’ is the best way to do it. I think it’s a good thing that the Government is taking its time to look at all the facts carefully.”
Mark Anderson, Managing Director of Maxim said
‘’It was good to welcome Mr Lewis to the Brewery and I am pleased that he managed to take a short time out from his busy schedule to sample a fine pint of Double Maxim which he described as a lovely beer.
Along with discussing the pro’s and con’s of minumum pricing, the visit also gave us the opportunity of raising with the Minister a number of issues including the dreaded beer duty escalator and the excise duty disparity with ciders and other alcoholic products – watch this space for developments!!.’’