Ireland’s government has introduced a new minimum unit price on alcohol to reduce harmful consumption by making cheaper products less readily available. Stores, restaurants, and pubs must now sell drinks containing alcohol for no less than 10 cents per gram of the substance.

The rule requires a price of one euro per standard drink, and a bottle of wine containing 12.5 percent alcohol, equivalent to about 7.4 standard drinks, cannot be sold for less than 7.40 euros.

The price of most premium brands will remain the same. Sources within Ireland’s national police service have reportedly warned the new pricing schedule for alcohol could lead to a surge in the use of illicit alcohol and substances, and it has already apparently led to cross-border shopping in Northern Ireland.

Irish authorities have cited the case of MUP in Scotland as evidence that this approach works, with alcohol purchases reportedly down 7.6 per cent in the 12 months after MUP was introduced in 2018.

 

 

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