Pints are illegal

Luke has allowed me to post my beer related thoughts on this blog.

I thought I would start off with my thoughts on an issue bought to my attention by regular reader and all-round fine fellow Flash. For reasons known only to himself, Mr Flash was surfing the Ministry of Consumer Affairs website when he came across this:

Reference: Consumer Affairs – Measurements

“Beer is traditionally sold by the glass or the jug. It is not usually sold by measure.

The use of Imperial measures (eg, ‘pint’) for trade is illegal. The pint is a measure equalling 568 millilitres.

Traders selling ‘pints’ of beer which are not equal to or greater than 568 mls face prosecution for short measure and for selling by Imperial measure. “

Now before you ask:

Yes, there is a Ministry of Consumer Affairs. Budget 2004 says it costs $6.8m a year.
Yes, there is a Minister of Consumer Affairs – Hon Judith Tizard – cost unknown.

This information raises some questions for me:

Are the many bars which sell beers called pints and half pints breaking the law?

Does the fact that these are usually not real pints or half pints mean anything?

How can someone selling a real pint (568ml or greater) be prosecuted for short measure?

Should a publican be prosecuted for selling a real pint which is advertised as such?

Under what legislation are imperial measures illegal?

Why are McDonalds Quarter Pounders legal from the imperial measure dikat?

How many prosecutions have there been under this category in the last five years?

What was the cost of any prosecutions?

You know, I feel a letter coming on.



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