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Soft Drinks

Volume 941: debated on Wednesday 14 December 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection whether he will request the Price Commission to investigate the variation in prices of soft drinks between different shops.

In its report on soft drinks and mixers sold in licensed premises, the Price Commission investigated the variations in prices of soft drinks sold on licensed premises and found that there were noticeable regional differences. I have no evidence to suggest that the variations in prices between different shops are other than one would expect in normal circumstances.

asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection whether, in the light of the fact earlier in the year the Price Commission found that public houses were charging too much for soft drinks and advised a reduction in the charge for mixed drinks containing tonic, soda and ginger ale, and that these prices have now increased, whether he will now refer this matter to the Price Commission for further investigation.

asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection (1) what action he has taken on the report on mixer and soft drinks issued by the Price Commission on 31st March 1977 and, in particular, in relation to their recommendation that the price should be reduced by at least two pence;(2) what action he has taken on the recommendations in the report of the Price Commission in relation to prices charged for shandy and lager and lime;(3) if he will take action as suggested in the Price Commission report, namely to prevent licensees charging higher prices than necessary for soft drinks when sold separately, in order to discourage this trade; and if he will take such action as necessary on those matters prior to Christmas and the New Year.

A number of outstanding issues arising from the Price Commission's report remain to be resolved. These will be included in the discussions which my right hon. Friend will be opening with the trade this week.