Alcohol sales gap widens

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HEALTH chiefs charged with persuading the Lothians public to drink less have suffered a blow after it emerged the gap between sales in Scotland and England is widening.

Figures have shown that despite endless messages on consumption, alcohol purchasing was 23 per cent higher north of the Border last year, from 21 per cent the year before. Sales of vodka, which are significantly higher, seem to be one of the reasons behind the gulf.

Dr Laurence Gruer, director of public health science at NHS Health Scotland, said: “This report shows clearly that in Scotland we drink on average over a fifth more alcohol per adult than in England and Wales.

“The figures underline the need to take action.”