Public Health Scotland (PHS) welcomes the Scottish Government’s plans to continue with minimum unit pricing (MUP) and to increase the minimum unit price of alcohol from 50p to 65p by the end of September.

Research from PHS, published in the Lancet, shows MUP has had a positive impact on tackling health harms from alcohol at a population level, with the study estimating that approximately 150 alcohol-specific deaths were prevented each year due to MUP. The latest annual data shows that, although alcohol-specific death rates are rising across the UK, they are rising more slowly in Scotland than other parts of the UK.

Dr Tara Shivaji, Consultant in Public Health, PHS said:

“We want to see deaths and harms from alcohol reduce in Scotland and MUP has contributed to saving lives and slowing the increase of deaths seen across the UK since the COVID-19 pandemic. MUP is an evidence-based policy and a necessary part of a package of measures, including care for those people who experience alcohol dependence.

“We’re pleased to see the Scottish Government continue setting a minimum price per unit of alcohol as part of plans to review and maintain its effectiveness following the vote in parliament. These measures are one of many that contribute towards improving and protecting the health and wellbeing of people in Scotland.”

Read the study in The Lancet

Last updated: 18 April 2024