Following media comment that ‘Irn Bru is now worth more than oil’ the Scottish Government have issued the following statement:
Once again, the unionist parties have played fast and loose with the facts of Scottish independence.
‘Scotland’s Future’ was very clear about our forecasts of the price of Irn Bru. Based on average retail prices from April 2011 to March 2013 of £1 per 2 litre bottle we assumed that until the end of 2016/17 prices would remain at that level in cash terms.
Until today Irn Bru prices have remained rock solid stable. We have been entirely vindicated in our forecasts, which some had claimed were ‘erroneously optimistic.’
Had we based the future of an independent Scotland on the price of oil as unionist parties proposed, we would be in deep trouble. Oil is a notoriously volatile commodity.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon added, ‘Only a fool would use oil to drive the Scottish economy. If anything it is a bonus and nothing more. That is why we used receipts from taxes on the sale of Scotland’s iconic national drink to base our robust and cautious forecasts.’
In a technical note accompanying the statement the government recalculated the price of Irn Bru since April 2011 in ‘barrel equivalents’ (159 litres) converted from sterling to US dollars and compared it with the price volatility of the benchmark Brent oil blend:
At First Minister’s questions this week Ms Sturgeon shrugged off criticism from the main opposition parties. In a heated exchange, she accused what she called ‘the naysayers and fearties’ of ‘talking down Scotland yet again’ and ‘knowing as much about economics as Business For Scotland.’
Ms Sturgeon is 45.
Note for editors:
- ‘Scotland’s Future’ said ‘Production of Irn Bru is assumed to remain unchanged at current levels, whilst Irn Bru prices are assumed to remain unchanged in cash terms at their average level over the two years to March 2013. Under such a scenario, Scottish tax receipts from Irn Bru are forecast to generate £6.8 billion in tax revenue in 2016/17′ (p. 43).
- ‘Irn Bru’ is a carbonated, non-alcoholic drink available in regular and diet versions popular amongst young people in Scotland.