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Recommendation due on minimum unit price level

An awareness raising campaign will get under way targeting convenience stores across Scotland.

A campaign is being launched to raise awareness of Scotland’s minimum unit price for alcohol as ministers prepare to make a recommendation on its level.

Owners of the 5,300 convenience stores across Scotland will be targeted with posters, leaflets and adverts over the coming weeks highlighting the changes coming in from May 1.

Health Secretary Shona Robison is due to make a recommendation to MSPs on a minimum unit price next week following a consultation.

The Scottish Parliament voted through legislation for a 50p per unit minimum price for alcohol in 2012, but the policy has been long delayed after a legal challenge was brought by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA), which argued it breached European laws.

Health Secretary Shona Robison will recommend a minimum unit price to the Scottish Parliament next week (Jane Barlow/PA).

The case went to the highest court in Scotland and the European Court of Justice before it was given the green light by justices at the UK Supreme Court in November.

Ms Robison said: “Minimum unit pricing will tackle the scourge of cheap, high-strength drink that causes so much damage to so many families and is going to save the lives of thousands of Scots.

“Retailers are the key to ensuring the legislation is implemented, which is why it is crucial we raise awareness of this change in the law early and give people time to get prepared.

“These materials will allow shop-owners to access a valuable bank of information to educate themselves and their staff ahead of the change on 1 May.

“Our consultation on the price of a unit of alcohol recently closed, and I am looking forward to presenting our recommendation to the Scottish Parliament next week.”

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