Study: Aussies’ Booze Consumption Unsurprisingly Up In Lockdown

Study: Aussies’ Booze Consumption Unsurprisingly Up In Lockdown

A Roy Morgan report has indicated that wine, beer, spirits and ready to drink (RTD) beverage consumption in Australia is up from a year ago.

Global health studies have consistently identified Australian’s as being some of the heaviest drinkers in the world. This has remained the case despite evidence of steadily decreased rates of drinking frequency and quantity.

However, the newest data from Roy Morgan has bucked the trend. Results from the latest consumer survey revealed that the proportion of Australian’s who drink alcohol grew by 3.5 per cent points to 69.6 per cent in the twelve months to September 2021. This is 13.894 million Australian’s aged 18+ that have ingested alcohol.

The usual suspects of wine, beer and RTD’s have been found to be behind the recent increases. The number of Australian’s drinking wine increased from 8.539 million to 9.263 million, an increase of 3.4 per cent over the year. RTD’s have also found success experiencing a 2.4 per cent year on year increase to 2.745 million Australians.

Over the same period the number of spirits drinkers climbed from 6.121 to 6.67 million representing an increase of 2.6 per cent. Also notable, despite the falling popularity of beer drinking, brewers have cause to celebrate with 147 thousand extra consumers. Overall, there 7.138 million Australian’s who presently drink beer.

While wine, beer, spirits and RTD’s have posted a strong showing, findings for other types of alcohol were not as positive. Fewer Australian’s are drinking cider, liqueurs and fortified wines. For a detailed summary of the findings as shown on Roy Morgan’s website, refer to the below table.

Speaking about the results Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine has said “The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a turnaround in the long-term trend of declining alcohol consumption we have seen consistently over the last 15 years.”

“In the year to June 2006 nearly three-quarters of Australian adults, 73.5%, drunk an alcoholic beverage in an average four weeks. This incidence trended down and reached a low point of 65.7% during the nation-wide lockdown of the June quarter 2020.”

Making sense of Australian’s changing behavior and attitudes toward alcohol, an ANU study worryingly found that psychological distress caused by the Covid 19 pandemic may well have been a key driver for the heightened rates of alcohol consumption this past year. Those with mental health difficulties or people with an already high base were sadly found to be of the most prone to developing problematic habits.

As Australia continues to open and enter a new phase of Covid-normal, the alcohol market will almost certainly have to adapt to continue the wave of growth its experiences in these last eighteen months.

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Australian drinking habits Roy Morgan

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