Scottish Conservatives have urged their counterparts across the EU to challenge the policy of minimum alcohol-pricing to establish whether it is compliant with EU laws on free trade.
The call comes despite the Scottish Conservatives backing the SNP Government's proposals, which could see a minimum 50p per unit price implemented north of the border.
The proposal is due to be put to a final vote on Thursday this week, and is widely tipped to become law.
The controversial proposal has gained cross-party support in recent months, with the Tories offering their support after securing a so-called 'sunset clause' allowing the law to be repealed after six years if it is deemed not to have succeeded.
Minimum pricing on alcohol is just one of a package of measures introduced in Scotland as part of the implementation of the Alcohol Act 2010.
The policy has been driven by research from the University of Sheffield which demonstrated that alcohol related deaths could fall by around 60 in the first year, and by 318 by year ten. The same research showed that the policy could have a significant impact on hospital admissions and on crime statistics.
The Scottish Conservatives are keen to point out that their call is in no way designed to derail the legislation. Jackson Carlaw is the Scottish Conservatives Health Spokesman.
"This is not an attempt to thwart the Bill but rather to ensure that every effort is made to determine whether the measure is legal," he said.
It is thought that the European Commission could rule that the law is in breach of free-trade legislation, but may only do so if a challenge is presented by another member state.
"It is vital that minimum pricing is given a robust MOT to ensure it does not break EU free-trade rules. So, to ensure that the EC expresses a view, Scottish Conservatives intend to meet and encourage concerned member states to mount a challenge so we can have clarification from Europe on the legality of a 50p unit price for alcohol," Mr Carlaw added.
UK Public Health Minister Anne Milton has previously expressed the view that the policy will be deemed illegal.
"Our advice is that, in itself, it is probably illegal as it contravenes European free-trade legislation. I know Scotland is thinking about introducing it, and they will be challenged, and that will clarify the law. But our advice is that it is illegal."
Read more on the story (Press Association)
Alcohol and crime (FindLaw)