Study: 2018 alcohol consumption in Estonia hits ten-year low

Alcohol section in a supermarket.
Alcohol section in a supermarket. Source: Anna Aurelia Minev/ERR

Consumption of alcohol in Estonia has decreased to the lowest level seen in a decade, it appears from an analysis entitled "Estonia's alcohol market, consumption and policy in 2018," which was commissioned by the Ministry of Social Affairs and conducted by the Estonian Institute of Economic Research.

Last year, Estonian residents consumed an average of 10.1 liters of absolute alcohol per adult last year, down 2 percent on year, spokespeople for the Ministry of Social Affairs told BNS on Monday.

Converted into liters of absolute alcohol, this 10.1 liters included 64 percent low-alcohol by volume (ABV) beverages. Consumption by category included 4.1 liters in beer and other low-ABV beverages, 1.8 liters in grape wine, and 0.6 liters in other light alcoholic beverages. Spirits accounted for 3.6 liters, including 2.3 liters of vodka.

Alcohol purchased abroad totaled a converted 3.3 liters of absolute alcohol per adult in 2018, including both alcohol consumed as well as alcohol stocked. Altogether 35 percent of adult respondents had purchased alcohol in Latvia, with 14 percent having traveled across the border specifically for that purpose alone.

59 percent of respondents indicated that alcohol consumption levels remain too high in Estonia. Drunk driving, domestic violence and health issues were deemed by 92, 84 and 83 percent of respondents, respectively, to be the most severe alcohol-related problems affected in Estonia.

Consumption volumes cited in the study are based on data published by Statistics Estonia and Eurostat on foreign trade, industrial production as well as sales data from domestic and foreign markets.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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