Pour Decisions – the case for reforming alcohol duty

In her article for this month’s Pub & Bar magazine legal page entitled “Pour Decisions – the case for reforming alcohol duty” – that can be downloaded below – Suzanne Davies comments on the report of an independent think-tank (the Social Market Foundation), commissioned by the Institute of Alcohol Studies, that explores the case for reforming alcohol duty in the United Kingdom, including the principle that the stronger an alcoholic drink is, the more tax it should incur.

She concludes that this represents some potentially good news for pub and bar operators as long as ‘the powers that be’ are prepared to listen. This is because implementation of the report’s recommendations would shift taxation towards high-strength drinks presently bought cheaply in supermarkets for consumption at home and away from weaker products bought in pubs and bars, with the consequence that, dependent on how the duties were structured, beer in on-licensed premises would become less expensive.