In a report released yesterday, the BMA recommended to the Government a tax increase on alcohol, the introduction of legislation controlling drinks promotions and amendments to the Licensing Act to include public health stipulations.
But BBPA chief executive Rob Hayward today insisted that the drinking culture of Britain would not be changed by "the flick of a tax switch".
"Equally, high taxes are not the answer. The fact is we already have some of the highest taxes and prices in Europe. Yet our alcohol problems and those of all the high tax and high price countries are significantly greater than the low tax and low price countries of Europe."
Supermarket chain Morrison's has backed moves by Tesco to ensure responsible pricing on alcohol and asked the Government to review Competition Law for pricing drink.
Off-trade retailers have been criticised by the BMA and on-trade lobby groups for selling alcohol as a loss leader.
By Christopher Walton
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