Supermarket under fire for selling beer at just 25p a bottle

A SUPERMARKET giant was under fire yesterday for selling bottles of beer for just 25p.

Morrisons was accused of oricing alcohol at "pocket-money" prices after unveiling a four-day promotion of four bottles of Carlsberg for 1.

The offer, trumpeted as "great value" by the retail giant, means it is selling the 3.8 per cent lager for half the price of mineral water in its stores over the weekend.

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The discount was launched just days after it emerged the SNP's plans to introduce minimum pricing for alcohol sales did not command enough support to get them through the parliament.

Campaigners fear that Morrisons' offer, which runs until close of business on Sunday, will trigger a price-cutting war in the run-up to Christmas.

Scottish health secretary Nicola Sturgeon said a "worrying" trend was emerging of supermarkets sell alcohol at "rock-bottom prices".

Morrisons said its offer was aimed at people "on a budget" but insisted it was acting responsibly by restricting sales to three packs per customer.

Although the offer is being run throughout the UK, Alcohol Focus Scotland, one of the main supporters of a minimum pricing scheme, said the promotion appeared to be a "direct challenge" to the Scottish Government's proposals on alcohol.

Jack Law, chief executive, added: "This is an extreme example of the selling of alcohol at pocket-money prices. At 25p per bottle, this is half the price of a bottle of water.

"This type of irresponsible selling of alcohol is one of the issues the new alcohol bill and minimum pricing seeks to eradicate."

Ms Sturgeon said: ""While there's nothing wrong with drinking in moderation, the extent to which alcohol is now being sold for rock-bottom prices to lure shoppers into supermarkets is worrying. The situation has got out of hand and is helping to fuel heavy consumption."

A spokeswoman for Morrisons said: "As a responsible retailer, we enable our customers to make responsible choices. This particular deal is great value."