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UK to introduce new glass sizes

New glass sizes are to be introduced to British pubs to allow businesses more flexibility in meeting consumer demand, stated the UK Science Minister David Willetts recently, thus changing more than three centuries of traditional measures there.

Under a Statutory Instrument new measures for beer and wine are to be introduced to the on-trade this October and will include the 400ml (two-thirds of a pint) measure for beer, one popularly known as a ‘schooner’ in some parts of Australia where the measure already exists.

The introduction of the new measures follows demand from the trade who want to be able to sell quantities of alcohol more suited to their target market and it will also suit the health lobby who want to see smaller measures introduced to bars and pubs.

According to Britain’s former Chief Medical Officer Liam Donaldson, per capita consumption of alcohol in Britain in 2009 had risen by 40 per cent since 1970 at a time when it had fallen in many other European countries.

The pint measure has been in existence since 1698. At present bars may only serve beer in pint (568ml), half-pint (284ml) or third of a pint (189ml) measures.

New measures are also to be introduced for wine. A new 75ml measure will be added to the 125ml (minimum) and 250ml measures and the present 100ml fortified wine measure will be added to by 50ml and 70ml measures. This will allow the trade to sell sample sizes of more pricey wines to customers and it’s also likely to have implications for the alcohol consumption rates of individuals.

Commented the Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) Minister David Willetts, "We have listened to consumers and businesses. They have called for fixed quantities to be kept but with greater flexibility."

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