2. PRICING OF ALCOHOL
Minimum price of packages containing more than one alcoholic product
2.1 Section 2 of the Alcohol Act makes provision in respect of the minimum price of a package containing two or more alcoholic products. Section 2 amends the 2005 Act to insert a mandatory licence condition into premises and occasional licences. The licence condition prevents retailers from selling alcoholic products packaged together at a lower price than the customer could buy the same products individually. The intention behind this is to ensure that customers are not encouraged to purchase alcoholic products packaged together because it is cheaper than purchasing the products individually.
2.2 The provision only applies where each alcoholic product in the package is available for sale on the premises separately. So if the retailer does not sell single cans of beer, then the price of an 8-pack of beer does not have to be double the price of a 4-pack of the same beer (with the cans being of the same size).
2.3 The provision also only applies to a package containing more than one alcoholic product. So if an alcoholic drink is packaged with a non-alcoholic product, cheese for instance, then this provision does not apply. For example, the provision does not apply to a bottle of wine packaged with cheese.
2.4 The provision also only applies to a package containing more than one alcoholic product. So if an alcoholic drink is packaged with a non-alcoholic product, cheese for instance, then this provision does not apply. For example, the provision does not apply to a bottle of wine packaged with cheese.
Off-sales: variation of pricing of alcoholic drinks
2.5 Section 3 of the Alcohol Act amends the provision in the 2005 Act for premises and occasional licences (paragraph 7 of schedule 3 and paragraph 6 of schedule 4 respectively). The 2005 Act imposes a condition in premises licences and occasional licences that prohibits the price for alcohol being varied before the expiry of 72 hours since the price of any alcohol sold on the premises was last varied. Section 3 amends this so that for alcohol sold for consumption off the premises the 72 hour restriction on varying prices only applies in relation to the price of the particular product in relation to which the price has previously been varied, as opposed to in relation to all alcoholic products sold. This means that in relation to off-sales of alcohol retailers may vary the price of different products at different times provided that the price of each individual product is maintained for 72 hours and the price variation takes effect at the beginning of a period of licensed hours.
Email: alastair bowden