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Last Updated: Saturday, 10 November 2007, 05:34 GMT
Alcohol health group criticised
Bar taps
It is thought the alliance might call for higher taxes on alcohol
The drinks industry has launched an attack on new campaign group, the Alcohol Health Alliance, even before it has been fully established.

The group will involve more than 20 health organisations and it is thought it will lobby for tighter regulation of the industry and higher tax on alcohol.

Five drinks industry bodies have written to the alliance warning its campaign could make matters worse.

Full details of the alliance's policies have not yet been announced however.

'Considerable risk'

The letter was sent to the chairman of the group, Professor Ian Gilmore, president of the Royal College of Physicians.

It read: "We are questioning some of the basic assumptions at the heart of this campaign because we do not believe the evidence base supports the call for higher taxes, more regulation and health warnings.

"Indeed our experience from around the world strongly suggests that the measures you are seeking carry considerable risk of exacerbating the situation."

It was signed on behalf of the British Beer and Pub Association, the Gin and Vodka Association, the National Association of Cider Makers, the Scotch Whisky Association and the Wine and Spirit Trade Association.

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