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Liquid conversations: Why drinking less alcohol is a trend in Australia

  • Written by Justine Eltakchi

Guidelines recommend that healthy adults limit their intake to ten standard beverages per week and four daily but why not try swapping out one of those drinks for an alcohol-free one?

To reduce Australia’s alcohol consumption, Entrepreneur and mum of four, Irene Falcone launched non-alcoholic beer, wine and spirits online superstore Sans Drinks and brick-and-mortar bottle shop in Sydney. Irene recently commissioned research that highlights the country's attitude towards drinking and the results are fascinating. 

“Some people are drinking less during the pandemic because they go to pubs less often. Some people are now drinking more at home. My mission is to disrupt the industry and it is, without a doubt, shifting,” says Irene.

Retailers claim that sales of alcohol-free beer have more than doubled over the past twelve months. This makes it one of their fastest-growing categories.

"Attitudes are changing now because non-alcoholic drinks are trendy, easy to find and relatively inexpensive. There is a huge wave coming now that non-alcoholic products are competing with sophisticated drink brands and more people are getting together without alcohol as a social lubricant,” says Irene.

A deep dive in the data shows;

How have your drinking (alcohol) habits changed since having children?

I drink more since having children

11%

I drink less since having children

24%

I just stopped drinking whilst I was pregnant

7%

I don’t have children

35%

None of the above

26%

Do you enjoy drinking alcohol?

Yes

77%

No

23%

Why not?

I struggle with hangovers

10%

It’s too expensive

32%

I don’t like the taste

39%

It has too many calories

13%

I’m worried about getting addicted

8%

I don’t like feeling drunk

30%

I lose control and do things I wouldn’t normally do

11%

None of the above

27%

Do you feel pressure to drink alcohol during social gatherings?

Yes, I feel peer pressure from my mates

11%

Yes, I drink alcohol because everyone does

17%

Yes, I drink more because my partner drinks more

4%

No

62%

I don’t drink alcohol

12%

How many drinks would you normally have and consider yourself safe to drive?

I don’t drink any alcohol if I plan on driving

54%

I do a self-assessment and if I feel OK, I will drive

7%

I closely monitor how much I drink when I am out

24%

I switch to non-alcoholic drinks so I can socialise longer

6%

I always have a designated driver

9%

How often have you done something you regret when under the influence of alcohol?

Every time I drink

2%

Most times that I drink

5%

Occasionally

43%

Never

49%

Which of the following statements apply to you?

I prefer alcohol to soft drinks because I’m an adult

10%

I would happily give up drinking altogether

29%

I wish I could drink more mindfully

11%

I enjoy alcohol (wine/beer/spirits) too much to quit

22%

None of the above

36%

Which of the following statements do you agree with?

I have started drinking more since the pandemic started

19%

I have found myself drinking alone more since the pandemic

22%

Since the pandemic I now drink every night of the week

8%

I’ve been turning to alcohol to destress during the pandemic

12%

Boredom caused by lockdowns increased my alcohol consumption

15%

I’ve struggled to curb my drinking since the pandemic started

4%

I don’t drink alcohol

42%

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