Raise tax on cheap, strong cider favoured by children
Ahead of this year’s Budget, we are joining with health experts to call on the Chancellor to increase duty on the cheap, high-strength white cider often purchased by children and dependent drinkers.
The call to increase duty on white cider comes as our figures reveal that, although the number of teenage drinkers is falling, the North East still has the highest rates of drinking amongst 11-15 year olds, with almost 3,000 becoming regular drinkers every year.
A recent Balance study found that three litre bottles of high-strength white cider, which contain the same amount of alcohol as 22 shots of vodka, are available for as little as £3.99 in off licences in the region, equating to a price of just 18p per unit.
Due to the low price and high strength of these ciders, children and homeless people, many of whom end up seeking help from specialist alcohol treatment services, account for almost all sales of the drink.