Scotland’s proposed alcohol-display ban was dropped last week in recognition of the concerns of retailers and other businesses.
The move to restrict the advertisement of alcohol suggested alcohol lines should be relegated to gantries behind tills, under the counter or in dedicated spaces off-limits to customers, and not displayed in shop windows. Retailer promotion of alcohol on social media would have also been banned.
However, Scottish First minster Humza Yousaf said the plans would be sent “back to the drawing board”. He added: “It is clear that some of the proposals have caused real concern to an industry which is already facing challenges on multiple fronts.”
Scotland district president Hussan Lal agreed: “Members are already facing enough financial strain with the rise of the cost of doing business and the growth of retail crime.
“Having to revamp our stores to put alcohol out of sight would be straining us even further.”
Scottish stores already face the toughest restrictions in the UK on the sale of alcohol, including minimum unit pricing, rules on where alcohol can be displayed, a ban on cross-merchandising and stricter restrictions on alcohol trading hours.
The day after Yousaf dropped the proposed display ban, more than 30 charities and health bodies called for an increase to the current 50p minimum unit price in Scotland.
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