The effect of introducing a minimum price on the distribution of alcohol purchase: a counterfactual analysis

Anurag Sharma*, Fabrice Etile, Kompal Sinha

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


We use counterfactual analysis techniques to evaluate the impact of a $2 minimum unit price (MUP) on the distribution of Australian (Victorian) household off-trade alcohol purchases. Our estimates suggest that a $2 MUP significantly reduces the purchases of at-risk households by up to -0.92 [90% CI: -1.55, -0.28] standard drinks at the highest quantiles and has substantially less effect on households purchasing at light and moderate levels. A $2 MUP may reduce the proportions of male and female shoppers purchasing at the public health threshold of more than two standard drinks per household member per day by -3.03 [90% CI: -4.83, -1.22] percentage points (relative variation: -17%); and -1.85 [90% CI: -2.60, -1.10] percentage points (relative variation:-22%), respectively. Implementing an MUP on alcohol thus promises significant positive impacts on public health. 

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1182-1200
Number of pages19
JournalHealth Economics (United Kingdom)
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • alcohol
  • counterfactual distribution
  • decomposition
  • minimum unit price

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