Saturday, November 19, 2011

U.S. Alcohol Consumption Hits 25-Year High

The booze business is recession proof, just ask your neighborhood bartender. They know the following to be true: When times are good, people enjoy a cocktail. When times are rough, people enjoy two cocktails. A recent Gallup poll shows alcohol consumption hit a 25-year high in 2010, with 67 percent of Americans reporting drinking alcoholic beverages. This number approaches the all-time booze benchmark of 71 percent set in the 1970s.

Many believe the economy can contribute to the rise in alcohol consumption, but perhaps not in the obvious way. A poor economy may not drive the masses to drink, but it sure gives people the extra time to have an adult beverage or two – especially if they have lost their job or are staying at home on weekends to save cash.
Social drinking is a relative term, and it has myriad meanings from coast to coast. Location, culture and upbringing influence alcohol intake just as much as age, sex and weight.
U.S. citizens in the far West and the Upper Plains states drink the most, reports the Washington-based Beer Institute.

The deep south and Mid-Atlantic are among the driest parts of the country.

What state came out on top of the tap? New Hampshire had the most widespread booze consumption in the poll. The average adult in that state doubled the national per capita average, gulping an average of 6.7 gallons of wine each and 3.8 gallons of liquor in 2010. Some in the health industry attribute this to the state’s popularity for both winter and summer vacations.

Americans drank the most wine on record last year, roughly 2.3 gallons apiece. Spirits climbed 18 percent to 1.5 gallons per person, while beer intake dropped 7 percent to 20.7 gallons, reports the Beer Institute.

[Via Fox 9 News]

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