Booze limit hit for the price of three coffees

IT CAN cost the equivalent of just three cups of coffee to buy your weekly recommended allowance of alcohol in Guernsey.

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But this is still at least twice as much as in the UK.

Alcohol Health Alliance UK found that some cider in England is sold for 19p per unit, costing £2.68 to buy the weekly recommended allowance of 14 units, whereas in Guernsey the figure is £6.35 for the cheapest cider.

As purchasing enough alcohol for the week in the UK costs the same as the average price for a takeaway coffee, the Alliance has called on the government to introduce minimum unit pricing in England, as is done in all other UK jurisdictions.

Guernsey also has no minimum alcohol pricing, although this is under consideration by Health & Social Care.

A quarter of adults reported drinking more than 14 units of alcohol in the last week, according to the 2018 Guernsey and Alderney Wellbeing Survey

With 80 alcohol-related deaths per day, alcohol is estimated to cost the UK more than £27bn annually, while English alcohol duty provides £10.5bn to £12.2bn annually.

The anticipated income from excise duty in Guernsey on alcohol in 2020 is £16.5m.

Records for on-island alcohol-related illness and mortality are most recently available for 2013 to 2015.

In that time, there were 19 alcohol-related deaths and 14 chronic liver disease deaths, including cirrhosis.

All but 5% of liver disease deaths were classed as preventable.

Findings from a 2013 survey, the most recent local data available, showed that a quarter of respondents drank nothing that week, a third drank within the daily limits, and 37.9% exceeded limits on their heaviest drinking day.

Some 20.8% of adults reported binge drinking – exceeding the limit – in the previous week, equating to 28.9% of those who drank.

Compared to a 2012 Health Survey for England, more Guernsey adults reported drinking the previous week, and more males exceeded recommended limits.

Guernsey Police reported more than 1,000 alcohol-related incidents in 2012.

Last year that had fallen to just over 500, partly due to adopting UK crime recording standards and Home Office counting rules in 2018.

. Bailiwick Law Enforcement has been approached to quantify the cost to taxpayers to respond to alcohol-related incidents and the number of alcohol-related incidents this year.

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