There has been plenty of concern over the past few days that the price of alcohol in Ireland is set to rise again, but it seems that only the products at the cheaper end of the spectrum will be affected.

The proposed new regulations on minimum unit pricing of alcohol will not be aimed at all products on the market, but is only set to tackle those retailers who are selling below-cost.

Speaking to The Irish Times, the chairwoman of the National Off-Licence Association, Evelyn Jones, said that the large retailers who sell wines, spritis and beers below-cost would have to either raise their prices or delist certain products, but the other off-licences and business who don't engage in that practice wouldn't see any increase. The price will depend on what the chosen amount for the minimum unit will be, as it could range between 90c to €1.10, which is down to the Minister for Health to decide.

If Varadkar decides to opt for the pricing at the lower end of the scale, that means that products such as Tesco's "Everyday Value Vodka", currently retailing at €13.99, would be forced up to a minimum of €18, given that there are around 20g of alcohol in a bottle of spirits. The price for the cheapest bottle of wine (around 8g of alcohol) would be set at around €7.20, while the cheapest a can of beer (2g of alcohol) could be sold it is around €1.80.

Ms Jones stated that this won't have a knock on effect on most people buying their booze in the off-licence, as the average paid for a bottle of wine here is about €10 anyway: "the person who is buying the average bottle of wine or can of beer will not notice any changes once the new rules come in", adding that she doesn't think retailers would start upping their prices across the board should the pricing scheme be introduced.

Via The Irish Times