Alcohol consumption drops by 3% in 2008

18 March 2009 by
Alcohol consumption drops by 3% in 2008

UK alcohol consumption fell by more than 3% in 2008, according to new analysis of data from HM Revenue & Customs by the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA).

The fall, to 8.9 litres per head (of 100% alcohol), confirms the pattern of a downward trend in alcohol consumption since 2004, when it was 9.5 litres per head.

The figures show that, since the Licensing Act of 2005, when restrictions on opening hours were lifted, alcohol consumption has dropped 4.6%, resulting in a saving to the economy of £2.3b over the last three years (based on the Government's own calculation of alcohol harm).

This trend highlights the complete lack of justification for further, punitive alcohol tax increases and red tape that will put many more pubs out of business, according to the BBPA.

Mark Hastings, BBPA director of communications, said the figures show that the persistent perception of rising alcohol consumption in the UK is false.

"Based on the Government's own method of calculating alcohol related harm, the figures show that current trends are cutting billions from the nation's alcohol harm bill," he said.

"This calls into question the case for pressing ahead with further punitive increases in tax increases and costly red tape, as the Government seems determined to do. Government policy should be based on the facts not reflect the myths on alcohol."

UK consumption of alcohol (litres per head of 100% alcohol)

2004 - 9.5
2005 - 9.4
2006 - 9.1
2007 - 9.2
2008 - 8.9

Source: HMRC

Pub leaders call for freeze in alcohol duty >>

ALMR wants ban on below cost alcohol sales to fight binge drinking >>

Battle of the binge drinking >>

Government rejects call for minimum alcohol price >>

Public does not want licensing reform reversed >>

By Daniel Thomas

E-mail your comments to Daniel Thomas here. jobs
Looking for a new job? Find your next bar or pub job here with jobs

The Caterer Blog]( Catch up with more news and gossip on the Caterer Blog here
[Newsletters For the latest hospitality news, sign up for our e-mail newsletters.
The Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email

Start the working day with The Caterer’s free breakfast briefing email

Sign Up and manage your preferences below

Check mark icon
Thank you

You have successfully signed up for the Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email and will hear from us soon!

Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.


Ad Blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an adblocker and – although we support freedom of choice – we would like to ask you to enable ads on our site. They are an important revenue source which supports free access of our website's content, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.

trade tracker pixel tracking