Friday, 13 August 2010

Beer and wine consumption

There's an interesting pair of graphs on Mark Wadsworth’s blog showing beer and wine consumption in Britain from 1961 to 2005. For some reason, they’re in “short tons”, which is a measure of weight, not volume (I think there are around 7 barrels in a short ton), but the message is very clear. Wine shows a constant, steady growth, but equally, just look at the way beer consumption grew up to its peak in 1979. Since then, it has declined, with a sharp fall in the early 80s when so much thirst-inducing heavy industry was eliminated, but not catastrophically so. Indeed, since around 1992, it just seems to have bumped along at a roughly constant level. Compare that with the table I posted recently showing a decline of over 40% in on-trade beer sales since 1997. So it would appear there hasn’t been a massive overall fall in beer sales, but rather a substantial shift from on- to off-trade consumption.


  1. This study/graph made me sad and I don't know why. Maybe it's about the drop of the amount of beer consumption now in comparison to early years. But still i'm quite relieved that it's not a major shift. :)

  2. There doesn't appear much evidence of this brand new epidemic of rabid alcohol consumption either, especially considering population must have increased over that time. Reckon someone's been lying to us?

  3. Ta for link.

    DP, them? Lie to us? What about the scourge of passive drinking?

  4. If you want a nice graph done by per-capita alcohol consumption - wine v. beer, try this.

  5. "What about the scourge of passive drinking?"

    I think the anti-alcohol puritans would prefer it if we opted for passive living.


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