Minimum Price Report

firstpurchase-300[1]What’s one of the easiest and best strategies for making Canadians drink less?

Raise the price.

The Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse recently published a report recommending just that, as reported by CBC news.

According to research, one of the factors that controls both binge drinking and average consumption  – meaning beer on the weekend or a bottle of wine with dinner – is how much it costs. Do you keep price in mind when you shop at the LCBO? Do you buy cheap brew at the Beer Store to supply your buddies, and save the ‘good stuff’ for yourself?  Many people are sensitive to the bottom line when it comes to booze.

Price compared to actual spending is something called market elasticity. There is a point of diminishing returns where, when they raise the cost of something, eventually people buy less of it.  Health promoters are advocating for a minimum cost per unit of alcohol (to affect market elasticity) to try to change consumer habits in regards to drinking.

Author: Doug Ironside RN

Doug is a Registered Nurse (PHN) with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit.

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