Adelaidenow (Australia) — Flawed stats veil alcohol usage

  • Post category:World News

Australians are drinking even more than authorities thought, the latest statistics show.

An article published yesterday by the Medical Journal of Australia   argues that the Australian Bureau of Statistics has significantly underestimated alcohol consumption for years, a mistake that undermines alcohol policies.

Author Associate Professor Tanya Chikritzhs, from the National Drug Research Institute, said estimates relied on the false assumption that alcohol levels in wine was steady, but wine had been getting stronger.

“More accurate” estimates show per capita consumption is up from under 9.7 litres of pure alcohol a year in 1992-93 to about 10.2 litres.

“Alcohol consumption is at one of its highest points since 1991-92 and probably would have been higher if not for the alcopops tax,” she said.

Professor Mike Daube, of McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth, said more alcohol consumed meant more more health, social and policing problems.

He said drinks companies poured at least half a billion a year into advertising and “we need ways to protect children and young people from this promotional onslaught”.


Source: Adelaidenow (Australia), 02/11/10