Big beer discounts increase problem drinking, crime: lobbyist

Large discounts on beer attract young people and problem drinkers, according to the Dutch Institute for Alcohol Policy STAP. This in turn leads to an increase in alcoholism and crime, according to the institute. STAP is calling for the introduction of a minimum price for alcohol, RTL Nieuws reports.

To support this call, STAp has six recent studies that shows that setting a minimum price on alcohol is the best solution.

Higher taxes on alcohol also work, according to a study by RIVM. But according to STAP, the problem is that retailers don’t always pass the higher tax on to the customers. They use cheap beer to attract people to the store. Therefore the minimum price will be more effective.

This support is necessary because setting a minimum price is against European regulations. But late last year a Scottish judge ruled that legislation can be circumvented if there is sufficient evidence that a minimum price on alcohol as the biggest positive effect on public health.

A minimum price would have to apply for all types of alcohol, both in supermarkets and in bars and restaurants, according to RTL. The price should be based on the percentage of alcohol. It will be up to politicians to decide whether a minimum price is necessary.