There’s an article in The Times today reporting on how the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) have called for minimum pricing on alcohol, as one of a raft of measures to clamp down on alcohol abuse.
Professor Ian Gilmore, head of the Royal College of Physicians and chairman of the Alcohol Health Alliance, said he witnessed “week in week out the burden of alcohol on patients”. A “lot of people were opening a bottle of wine every evening and struggling to get the cork back in again”, he said.
This sounds like a great argument for screwcaps.
More seriously, I’m not sure there’s much that minimum pricing will achieve. Instead, we should be asking why people are choosing to abuse alcohol to such an extent. Is there something wrong with our society that makes people want to drink too much? Of course, asking questions like this makes politicians uncomfortable – much easier just to bring in some panic legislation that simply addresses these symptoms of societal malaise.