Morrisons has become the first retailer to sign up to the new Responsibility Deal pledge banning any carbonated product in its stores with more than four units of alcohol in a single-serve can.

It is only the second signatory to the Deal, with the government and industry leaders having struggled to persuade suppliers and retailers to back the idea.

“We wanted to set the retail standard for responsible single-serve can packaging,” said Martyn Jones, group corporate services director at Morrisons. “We have been monitoring our range for some time and have already removed all single-serve cans with more than four units from stores. Having already taken this bold step, we felt confident in signing up to the new Responsible Can Packaging Pledge almost immediately.”

Although Morrisons had already stopped selling such products months before the Deal pledge was announced, it said it hoped its signature would now act as a catalyst for industry-wide action.

“We hope that signing up to the pledge will help support the government in reducing the incidence of alcohol-related abuse in the UK. We now need other retailers to join us to make this as effective as possible.”

Previously only AB InBev had backed the pledge, part of a package of measures launched at the start of the month, agreeing to stop selling 500ml cans of Tennent’s Super (9% abv); however it will still produce a 440ml can.