Scottish MPs have raised concerns over the effect alcohol minimum pricing could have on cross-border and internet sales and the potential damage to independent retailers.
Proposals were drawn up in the autumn to introduce minimum pricing for a unit of alcohol, with specific details yet to be announced.
But a Scottish Finance Committee report acknowledged fears highlighted by the Scottish Grocers’ Federation (SGF) that minimum pricing could drive up cross-border and internet sales.
It recommended that the Scottish government monitors trends in internet sales to assess the impact of minimum pricing on alcohol sales, in the event that the Alcohol (Minimum Pricing) (Scotland) Bill becomes law.
The committee also urged the government to assess the potential impact of cross-border sales for businesses close to the English border.
Commenting on the committee’s report, SGF chief executive John Drummond said: “The report acknowledges many of the concerns raised by the SGF. We welcome the Finance Committee’s recommendations that there should be an on-going evaluation of the impact of the legislation once enacted.”