Alcohol tax increases reduce demand for drinks more significantly than other public policies, according to a new study.

American research published in the February edition of the medical journal Addiction re-evaluated 112 studies from around the world, including the UK, US and Canada, on drinks market price sensitivity.

It found that when prices go up people drink less, although beer drinkers were less responsive than wine or spirits drinkers.

Lead author Dr Alexander Wagenaar, from the University of Florida College of Medicine, said: "Using taxes to raise prices on alcohol [beats] things like law enforcement, media campaigns or school programmes." 

Drinks firms have faced above inflation tax rises in several markets over the last year, including the UK, a number of US states, Australia and France.