The Instigator
bobstacle
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
MisterDeku
Con (against)
Winning
4 Points

Beer in the UK is too expensive

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
MisterDeku
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/8/2013 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,393 times Debate No: 35383
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (2)

 

bobstacle

Pro

When I talk about beer, i'm referring to lager, cider, bitter, dark beer, and generally ale in all it's existences.
I think given how fundamental it is to our culture in the UK, making the price of it prohibitive is wrong, and is possibly doing more harm than good.
MisterDeku

Con

I'm going to assume that what Pro has written in the first round isn't a full-blown argument, but just some opening comments. That said I'll just use this round for acceptance.

Good luck Bostacle, and thanks for making the debate!
Debate Round No. 1
bobstacle

Pro

Hi, thanks for accepting. This is my first debate (on this website I mean!), so go easy!

Cider is my most favourite drink in the world. A Pint of Thatchers Gold in my local on a warm day is just above the birth of my child in terms of highlights. However...

Beer in the UK in my opinion is far too expensive. I think it accentuates the problem we already have with binge drinking. I think that because as young adults we are so prohibited from experiencing alcohol in general, it creates a taboo when we arrive at 18 to drink excessively.
In European countries such as Italy and Spain, children are encouraged to enjoy a glass of wine with an evening meal. In these same countries, beer is far less expensive but they do not have the same issue as we do with binge drinking. Surely this is due to the earlier exposure eliminating the mystery.

Raising the prices of alcohol does NOT in any way reduce the amount people drink. It simply alters what it is they drink. The lower to middle classes are those principally affected by this, as disposable income is obviously a big consideration.

For example, it is unusual now to find a pint of average strength lager in a pub in the North of England for less than "3. When faced with the option of a "3 pint, or a 3 litre bottle of cider from the shop for "2.69, which is the obvious option?

I feel the price of beer is driving business down in pubs across the UK, as it become prohibitive for the average consumer. This in turn, leads to drinking across homes and the outdoors by younger people doing far more damage to their health than they realise.

It is now quite common amongst people of all ages to 'pre-drink' cheap vodka etc before going to any kind of function, thus reducing the required cost of beer to fulfil one's 'quota' if you will.

My point is that I think this is not only an issue regarding cost, but also an underling concern about long term health caused by the price of beer, something which is essential to our culture and has been for hundreds of years.
MisterDeku

Con

Thanks for the debate!

First and foremost, we need to knock out the argument concerning the drinking age. It doesn't have anything to do with the price of alcohol and is generally a question of morality instead of economics. The drinking age in the United States for example is a staggering 21, yet the average price of beer in the US isn't all the expensive[1].
[1]http://www.wineaccess.com...

Moving on we have to consider the real impact of Pro's arguments; he urges a world where the drinking age is lowered. Not a world where the price of beer is lowered. This is the solution that would help to solve for binge-drinking, but it doesn't have anything to do with the price of beer. It's natural that when something is forbidden, you want it all the more. But when you are allowed to have things in moderation, you learn to discern quality and things like binge drinking are no longer problems. Naturally there will be people with alcoholic tendencies who will continue to binge drink despite the removal of the negative stigma, but those kinds of people suffer an addiction and are outside the scope of this debate.

That said there isn't really a reason to vote for Pro based on the arguments he as provided. The drinking age is wholly a non-issue and the argument of pubs closing is one of personal responsibility. Something I'll cover while making my own argument.

So onto my own arguments, beer is expensive in the UK, yes, but it's not too expensive because the price is justified. In the United State you can buy a pound of rice for about 50 cents[2]. Rice isn't a high demand item so it doesn't cost too much to purchase. However that same rice costs a whopping 3 dollars a pound in Japan[3]. Rice is much more highly valued in Japan than it is in the United States and the higher rate of consumption and demand for it justifies the higher prices. So while I would pass on a 20-pound bag of rice that costs $60, a person in Japan wouldn't think twice about it.
[2] http://www.walmart.com...
[3] http://www.amazon.com...

In the same way, beer is expensive the UK, but the price is justified. As Pro said alcohol in general has a huge cultural significance in the UK and cutting corners in it's production to lower the price just isn't going to happen.

Pubs may be closing in the UK, but it's not because the price of beer is driving them under, it's because there were too many there in the first place. These pubs were opened when such an endeavor was financially viable or because of some kind of romantic draw to owning a pub blinded the owner into making a financially foolish decision. It always sucks when your favorite hang-out has to close, but if the owner can't make the right financial decisions or if the customers aren't willing to support the business, then it's irresponsible to blame the good instead of one's self. While some pubs may have to close, there are others which remain big successes.

Vote Con!
Back to you Pro.
Debate Round No. 2
bobstacle

Pro

bobstacle forfeited this round.
MisterDeku

Con

Extend :P
Debate Round No. 3
bobstacle

Pro

bobstacle forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
bobstacle

Pro

bobstacle forfeited this round.
MisterDeku

Con

Extend.
Vote Con!
Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by Wocambs 3 years ago
Wocambs
MisterDeku talks about supply and demand, but this is largely irrelevant, as, to my understanding, it is more of an issue of tax. There has indeed been a shift away from pubs, in fact CAMRA says that in the past six years the volume of alcohol sold in pubs has decreased by 30%, while the supermarket have snapped up that share. There is a clear shift away from pubs and towards supermarkets driven by price... oh,whatever, this isn't even my debate. A pity.
Posted by brian_eggleston 3 years ago
brian_eggleston
Booze in general is too expensive in the UK.

I tend to drink top shelf and my favourite tipple (whisky and Coke) is wildly expensive in most pubs and bars in the City of London where I work.

Mind you, the Libor-fixing, insider-dealing, tax-evading, PPI mis-selling investment bankers and hedge fund managers that patronise them can more than afford the prices (they still put them on expenses under "entertainment" and offset the cost against tax though).

Elsewhere, pubs are closing down left, right and centre because the government has taxed booze to the point where punters can't afford to go out as often as before: and the ban on smoking didn't help either.
Posted by Wocambs 3 years ago
Wocambs
Oh, I agree. The pub is becoming so expensive that I am certain people are actually getting drunker, and damaging their bodies more, because they buy a bottle of cheap vodka instead of having a few pints.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by 1Devilsadvocate 3 years ago
1Devilsadvocate
bobstacleMisterDekuTied
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Reasons for voting decision: F.F.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 3 years ago
Ragnar
bobstacleMisterDekuTied
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Reasons for voting decision: FF.