Youth hazardous drinking rates continue to fall

Photo: File.

A Ministry of Health survey has confirmed that hazardous drinking amongst younger consumers has fallen by almost five percent compared with previous surveys.

Speaking on behalf of Spirits New Zealand, New Zealand Winegrowers and the Brewers’ Association of New Zealand, Spirits NZ Chief Executive Robert Brewer said this was "great news" - but insisted there was still work to be done as younger drinkers remained over-represented in the statistics.

“The other good news is that all age groups surveyed show either a fall or a plateauing in hazardous drinking compared with the last survey done in 2015/16,” says Brewer.

“And the overall rate of hazardous consumption has fallen from 20.8 per cent to 19.5 per cent reversing the last survey’s reported rise.”

The fall in youth hazardous drinking continues the downward trend seen over a number of years.

“There is no doubt that more and more younger consumers are choosing to drink moderately and responsibly,” says Brewer.

"The real challenge, however, is to ensure this trend not only continues but accelerates

“This can only be achieved by targeted programmes which understand and amplify the reasons why younger drinkers are choosing to drink better. The industry-funded social change charity Cheers! is actively engaged in doing just this.

“The overall message is pretty clear - to be healthy we have to eat well, stay active and, if we choose to drink, drink moderately.”


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