Scottish Wholesale Association urges members to participate in consultation on MUP

The Scottish Wholesale Association is urging members to participate in the Scottish Government’s recently launched consultation on minimum unit pricing (MUP) by wholesalers on trade sales.

While MUP came into force on May 1, the Scottish Government accepts that there are differing views within the licensing community on whether a wholesaler with a premises licence should apply MUP to trade sales or whether trade sales from those licensed premises are exempt from MUP.

The Scottish Government, therefore, considers that a legislative change is required to clarify the position for certain wholesalers with regards compliance with MUP, and is seeking views on the legislative change proposed in a consultation.

Responses to the consultation will be used to inform the legislative change required to clarify the position for certain wholesalers.

Kate Salmon, executive director of the Scottish Wholesale Association, said: “In May, we welcomed the announcement by the Scottish Government regarding the consultation on minimum unit pricing (MUP) by wholesalers on trade sales and confirmation that sales to persons for the purposes of their trade do not have to comply with MUP where a premises licence is in place.

“Our Guidance Note for Wholesalers – on which we obtained independent legal advice and joint Counsels’ opinion – reflects this position and the use of dual pricing.

“Notwithstanding our, and the Scottish Government’s view, that this is the correct legal position as it stands, the Scottish Wholesale Association welcomes that the matter will be put beyond doubt by a proposed amendment to the 2012 Act to confirm that trade sales do not have to comply with MUP.”

The consultation, launched on August 3, will close on October 26. Full details are available at https://consult.gov.scot/alcohol-policy/wholesalers-minimum-unit-pricing/