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Trade hits back at calls for higher alcohol tax

Published:  23 July, 2008

Wine and spirits producers have hit out at reports that experts at the World Health Organisation are calling for higher taxes on alcohol and more regulations on its sale.

Health campaigners in the UK are supporting the call, which critics say would punish all drinkers for the problems created by the minority who misuse alcohol.

Jeremy Beadles, chief executive of the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, said: "The health lobby admit they want everyone to pay for the sins of a few. This is wrong and consumers will see it as an unfair attack on the innocent rather than a practical step to solve the problem."

"Alcohol misuse does cause problems. That's why we should all focus our efforts on educating and treating those who misuse alcohol. We should not punish millions of ordinary hard working families by increasing the financial burden they already face."