Charity calls for superstrength tax hike

21 June, 2010

The head of a charity for the homeless has called on the government to tax superstrength beers and ciders to "such an extent that their consumption diminishes dramatically".

Thames Reach chief executive Jeremy Swain said the price of a 50cl can should be pegged at a minimum of £2.25.

In a letter to Chancellor George Osborne, Swain said: "We would also back any plans introduced by your colleagues in government to give lcoal councils the powers to clamp down on these drinks."

Swain branded superstrength beer and cider as "undoubtedly the biggest killer of homeless people in the UK".

He added: "In an age of corporate responsibility, it is irresponsible that drinks companies are producing half-litre cans of 9% superstength lager which contain 4.5 units of alcohol."

He said white ciders were "cheaper than lemonade".




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Richard Hemming MW: beware inverse snobbery

Few things can bring communal pleasure so intimately as wine. Apart from a hot tub, perhaps. Sport can trigger mass jubilation, film gives us shared empathy, but wine has a nigh-unique ability to bestow conviviality among us through a shared bottle – which makes it especially galling that we spend so much time divided over it.

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