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Ensuring a sustainable and prosperous convenience industry in Scotland

Pricing Mechanism Required to End Below Cost Selling

The Scottish Parliament’s Health and Sport Committee has voted down measures included in the Alcohol etc (Scotland) Bill to introduce a minimum price on alcohol.

John Drummond, Chief Executive of the Scottish Grocers’ Federation (SGF) said:

“We have always had concerns regarding the potential unintended consequences surrounding minimum pricing including cross border shopping, an increase in online sales of alcohol and growth of the illicit trade. “However, now that minimum pricing appears to be defeated there is no mechanism to stop the big supermarkets selling alcohol at rock bottom prices. Not only would this undermine the intention of the Bill, to address Scotland’s harmful relationship with alcohol, it will also reduce the opportunity for small shops to attract customers from supermarkets and perpetuate a commercial advantage for the biggest players.

“SGF supports a ban on below cost selling of alcohol and would urge politicians to support a UK wide approach tax based approach to achieve this.”