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HAVE YOUR SAY: Should there be a minimum price per unit on alcohol?
9:11am Friday 1st March 2013 in News
Seventy health organisations are calling on the UK Government to prioritise its proposal for a minimum price on alcohol.
A report by the University of Stirling and the Alcohol Health Alliance sets out policies aimed at curbing the nation's drink problem, including a recommendation that a minimum price of 50p per unit of alcohol is introduced in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
As well as the 50p price point, the report, Health First: An evidence-based alcohol strategy for the UK, suggests at least a third of the product's label displaying a health warning.
The drink-drive limit should be reduced to 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood, it also says.
The UK Government's 10-week public consultation on whether to a introduce a baseline amount of 45p per unit of alcohol closed on February 6. Its response is expected before May.
The 50p minimim price is already law in Scotland, although it is not yet enforced. The Scottish government also plans to reduce the drink-drive limit in Scotland from 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood to 50mg.
The Alcohol Health Alliance is urging the UK Government to adopt these measures, to prevent England, Wales and Northern Ireland being "left behind".
Sir Ian Gilmore, who chairs the alliance, said: "Governments across the UK have begun to take action to reduce the harm that alcohol can cause. This action is very welcome but needs to go further.
"In developing this strategy, we considered the best available evidence about appropriate policies and interventions that are needed both to reduce drinking levels in individuals and reduce the damage to families and communities that alcohol can cause. The report provides a blueprint for action, now and in the future."