UK: Government to implement 125ml wine measure

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Pubs may be forced to offer wine in smaller glasses as part of a new proposal by the Government to crackdown on binge drinking.

New 125ml glasses will be introduced in a bid to stop women from exceeding safe drinking levels.

Ministers believe the reduced serving could cut the health risks to middle-class social drinkers, in particular women, who may not be aware how much alcohol they are consuming.

Announcing the proposal, Public Health Minister Dawn Primarolo said: "Glass sizes have increased over the years, as has the strength of wine.

"Too often the only size available is a large glass. I would like to see more choice available so people can opt for a small glass."

Under the new plans, bars and pubs would still be able to offer 175ml and 250ml measures, but with one in ten bars using the latter as its 'standard' size, a strong wine could push a woman over the driving limit and the daily allowance of two to three units.

Despite this, a number of retailers have not welcomed the scheme, which will be part of a mandatory code of practice expected to be released next week.

A spokesman for JD Wetherspoon said: "We have no desire to introduce a 125ml measure and are happy with the sizes we have. If the government wants to make it mandatory then we will be more than happy to look at any proposals but our gut feeling is that we are happy with the 175ml and 250ml and see no reason for change if that's what customers want. We have found no demand for a 125ml glass.

"If a customer orders a larger glass they need to take responsibility for themselves as adults. And no decent pub would serve somebody if they thought it was too much for them."

However, chief executive for Alcohol Concern, Don Shenker, said that offering consumers greater choice over how much they drink allows them to have "more control" and choose to drink more responsibly.

"There's no need to ban large glass sizes as long as people are aware that a single large glass is the official daily recommended limit for a woman," said Shenker. "Pubs can use their existing larger glasses and simply pour a smaller measure if that's what the customer wants.

"It's unfair that people who want a small glass of wine should have to pay for a medium or large one."

Sectors: Wine

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