independent

Monday 21 April 2014

Irish not as merry as their European counterparts

Alcohol intake has decreased in last twelve months

We, as a nation, need to tack our complex relationship with alcohol

The age-old familiar stereotype of the drunken red-faced Irish may have to be re-assessed in light of new research into the drinking habits of the European nations.

According to a survey conducted by Wolf Blass and Lindeman’s, 71pc of Irish adults are drinking wine – less than their English (78pc), Dutch (73pc) or Swedish (86pc) peers.

In the study of 1,038 wine drinkers, it was also found that as many as 91pc of adult Danes consume wine, a hike of 20pc on those Irish that enjoy a glass of vino. 

The actual quantities of wine drank by the Irish also paled in comparison with adults in other European countries.

While we drink approximately 17 litres per year, the French drink a whopping 45 litres annually on average. Other regions recorded similar high quantity intake, with Portugal (42 litres), Italy (41 litres) and Germany (25 litres) included in the survey results.  

A grand total of 2.3 million Irish adults drink wine, according to the survey, but the under 35s have been increasing their intake over the last twelve months.

And while the over 55 age group are reportedly drinking the same amounts as they did a year ago, 28pc of the nation are actually drinking less overall.   

Some of the reasons for the drop in wine-drinking included expenses and health reasons.

However, perhaps surprisingly enough, the main excuse was that Irish people are drinking less alcohol in general.

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