The Government has said it may support minimum pricing of alcohol linked to inflation, writes Michelle Perrett. In its response issued today to the Health Select Committee Report on the Alcohol Strategy, the Department of Health said: “The Government is clear that a minimum unit price should be effective over a sustained period and recognises that there are different ways by which this could be achieved, for example by linking the minimum unit price to inflation. “This and other issues raised by the Committee, including a review clause, will be considered further as we move towards implementation of the policy.” The Government is to release its consultation on minimum pricing this Autumn. The consultation will consider the impact of a range of minimum pricing levels on consumption, health harms and crime, and other factors such as impact on the Exchequer and business. It will also consult on the ban on multi-buy promotions. The Government said: “This and other issues raised by the Committee, including a review clause, will be considered further as we move towards implementation of the policy.” In its response, the Government said it will also review the current conditions within the Mandatory Code for Alcohol to ensure they are also targeting problems such as irresponsible alcohol promotions in pubs and clubs. On the Responsibility Deal, the Government said the Committee "may have underestimated" the "significant" impact of drinks firms reducing the ABV of their products. The Committee had indicated that reducing the ABV on some lagers from 5% to 4.8% would not have any “significant impact”. The Committee called for tougher restrictions on alcohol advertising such as banning alcohol ads in cinemas and radios and requiring health warnings on all alcohol advertising, mirroring the approach known as Loi Evin in France. But the Government said an evaluation of the impact of such measures on drinking among under-18s in France was “weak”. Drinkaware will also face a review over whether it operates with stakeholders in an “appropriate and effective way”, the Government said. In its report earlier this year, the Committee supported the idea of minimum pricing in principle.