- Scotland has so much to gain from reducing how much we drink
- AFS welcomes revised alcohol consumption guidelines
- Emergency services face shocking levels of alcohol abuse
- Every child has the right to grow up safe from alcohol harm
- Public health must prevail over big business
- New toolkit to help children affected by family alcohol problems
- Price check reveals cheap cost of strong alcohol
- Sales increase underlines need for minimum pricing
- Time to kick alcohol out of sport
- Alcohol linked with stomach cancer
- AFS calls for compulsory health warnings on alcoholic drinks
- Are supermarkets 'responsible retailers' when it comes to alcohol?
- Scottish health charities call for excise duty rise to tackle cheap alcohol
- Alcohol campaigners unite to call for stronger protection from alcohol advertising to children
- New resource for people concerned about alcohol in their community
- Minimum pricing decision delayed until summer
- No completely 'safe' level of drinking
- New alcohol guidelines published
- Minimum pricing - European court ruling
- Alcohol fuels ambulance assaults
- 82% of Scots agree drink driving is unacceptable
- Scotland's alcohol strategy - what next?
- Scotland leads way in evidence-based alcohol policy
- New report reveals impact of alcohol on emergency services
- AFS appoints new chief executive
- Alcohol: a global concern
- Campaigners gather in Edinburgh for global alcohol conference
- Alcohol and pregnancy don't mix
- European Court minimum pricing opinion
- Call for minimum pricing as alcohol deaths rise
- How much are we really drinking?
- Dr Evelyn Gillan
- Majority of Brits harmed by other people's drinking
- Interactive map of alcohol and tobacco outlets
- Help consumers make an informed choice about alcohol
- Alcohol debate must continue
- Alcohol sponsorship in Formula 1: a dangerous cocktail
- Minimum pricing case to be heard in Europe
Minimum pricing - European court ruling
In September, the Advocate General of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) stated that minimum unit pricing is not precluded by EU law and can be implemented if it is shown to be the most effective public health measure available.
Today, the European Court of Justice has issued a similar ruling and it will now be up to the Scottish Court of Session to decide if minimum pricing is more effective than taxation in protecting health.
Commenting on today's judgement, Alison Douglas, Chief Executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland said:
"The ECJ has confirmed that Scotland can use minimum unit pricing to reduce our high levels of alcohol harm, provided it is more effective than taxation. Alcohol taxes are limited in their ability to raise the price of the cheapest alcohol to a level that will actually reduce harm. Whereas, minimum pricing is a targeted measure which will make the cheapest, strongest products less affordable to heavy drinkers who are most at risk of harming themselves and others. Moderate drinkers will barely notice any difference to the price they pay.
"Minimum pricing will reduce hospital admissions, cut crime and save lives. That’s why it has wide support from government, health professionals, the police and children’s charities. Alcohol sales and deaths rose in Scotland again last year, underlining the urgent need to get minimum pricing in place.
"In taking legal action against the Scottish Government, the Scotch Whisky Association has blocked the democratic will of the Scottish Parliament and sacrificed public health to protect their members’ profits."