Lifestyle Economics

Minimum alcohol pricing in Scotland will do nothing to help consumers


Lifestyle Economics

IEA comments on the proposal for a tax on sugary snacks

Press Release

IEA releases report on the need to reduce non-tariff barriers post-Brexit

IEA reacts to introduction of minimum alcohol pricing in Scotland

As minimum pricing takes effect in Scotland (Tuesday 1st May), Christopher Snowdon, Head of Lifestyle Economics at the Institute of Economic Affairs says:

“From midnight, shoppers in Scotland will see drastic increases in the price of their favourite drinks. It will become clear that minimum pricing is not a targeted measure that will only affect a few strong ciders. The public has been misled about this policy from the outset. Back-of-the-envelope calculations have been used to justify a nationwide rip-off that will raise the cost of living for all but the very rich. 

“If alcohol companies colluded to fix prices in this way, they would be prosecuted. Minimum pricing will suck tens of millions of pounds out of the pockets of ordinary drinkers to feed the egos of grandstanding politicians. Today is a good day if you run an off licence in Berwick-upon-Tweed. It is a bad day to be Scottish.”

Notes to editors:

For media enquiries please contact Nerissa Chesterfield, Communications Officer: or 0207 799 8920 or 07791 390 268

The price of the most popular bottles of whisky will rise by 25 per cent. The price of some beer and wine will rise by up to 70 per cent. The price of some ciders will more than double. Click here to read more.

For more on alcohol taxation policy from the IEA, click here.

The mission of the Institute of Economic Affairs is to improve understanding of the fundamental institutions of a free society by analysing and expounding the role of markets in solving economic and social problems and seeks to provide analysis in order to improve the public understanding of economics.

The IEA is a registered educational charity and independent of all political parties.

Further IEA Reading: Aggressively Regressive: The ‘sin taxes’ that make the poor poorer