Thursday, 26 September 2013

Alcohol Consumption Plummeting In Scotland

Shhh ... great news from Scotland was announced yesterday.

Official government figures have just been released which reveal the following [pdf page 53]:
  •  Average unit consumption for adults fell from 14.1 to 11.3 units between 2003 and 2012 
  •  In 2012, men drank an average of 4.6 units less per week than in 2003 (19.8 units in 2003 and 15.2 units in 2012). Average unit consumption for women declined from 9.0 units per week in 2003 to 7.6 units in 2012.
  •  The proportion of adults drinking at hazardous or harmful levels has declined since 2003 (from 33% of men and 23% of women to 25% of men and 18% of women in 2012) 
  •  Average unit consumption on the heaviest drinking day declined between 2003 and 2012 from 6.5 to 5.6 units for men and from 3.6 to 2.8 units for women. There has also been a decline in the proportion of men and women exceeding the recommended daily amount on their heaviest drinking day (from 45% in 2003 to 42% in 2012 for men and from 37% to 30% for women). The proportion exceeding twice the recommended daily amount has also declined slightly for men (from 29% to 25%) and women (from 19% to 15%).
  •  In 2003, 53% of men and 42% of women drank outwith the weekly and/or daily consumption guidelines. By 2012, 47% of men and 35% of women exceeded the recommended levels.
  •  In 2012, men drank on an average of 2.8 days in the previous week and women drank on an average of 2.5 days, a reduction since 2003, when men drank on an average of 3.3 days and women on 2.7 days.
  •  Since 2003 there has been a decline in the proportion of adults drinking on more than 5 days in the previous week from 17% to 12% in 2012
These are stunning statistics, an across the board decline of 15% to 30% in less than ten years! What's more, "the proportion of adults drinking at hazardous or harmful levels" - the ones always cited by health campaigners to divert attention from the overall decline - are at the high end with 22% to 25% decreases for women and men respectively.

It's a Scottish frenzy of reduced consumption! I'll bet the massed ranks of alcohol controllers must be ecstatic.

Indeed so. They urgently rushed out one of their regular avalanche of press releases yesterday. It went something like this.

"♫ Drifting along with the tumbling tumbleweeds ♫"
That's right. There was no optimistic press release; no welcome for fantastic news; no rejoicing. In fact, nothing at all. It was as if the Scottish Health Survey had been blackballed for, well, telling the truth.

It seems that - for the self-declared protecters of health - reporting on good news is somehow taboo. Could it be that they are more interested in their own future funding than applauding the restraint of Scottish citizens?

After all, if their claimed catastrophic 'epidemic' of alcohol carnage is exposed as a myth - which, as you can see from these figures, it is - there's not much urgent need to shovel cash their way during straitened times, now is there?  


moonrakin said...

OMG the Scottish reputation for a wee bevvy takes a tumble - once they've sobered up d'ya think they might get around to lynching of the SMPs? aor at the very least a decimation (in the Roman sense)?

David Pimborough said...

The silence was due to fear that maybe just maybe the Scottish people don't need these quasi fundamentalists and the alcohol control lobby could paraphrase that line out of the movie Backdraft

"You see that flash of light in the corner of your eye? That's your career dissipation light. It just went into high gear."


Ivan D said...

I am sure that the BBC will catch up later in the week. It usually takes the news team a bit longer if their favourite "charities" don't immediately send a press release. The headline will probably read something like "Alcohol consumption falls slightly but too many Scots still ignoring government advice on drink limits"

MarkWadsworth said...


Budvar Yorks said...

But along with smoking, there's just no safe level is there?
2 small sherries at Christmas, and you're just as addicted as the wino who would drink the antifreeze out your car radiator.

Oh and "Wont someone just think of the children!!".

That should just about cover any press release over the next few days.

Ivan D said...

Stupid of me not to have checked first but the BBC aka the propaganda division of the Provisional Puritan Government of GB (PPGB) got its plug for Authoritarianism by otherwise Pointless Political Nonentities (PPN) in well ahead of time. Leader of the PPN in Scotland,, the spectacularly stupid and hopelessly ill-informed Michael Matheson used the fall in consumption to fuel his campaign for minimum pricing. The BBC duly reported it, ignoring the opinion of the vast majority of the population and pretending balance through a quote from the Scottish Whiskey Association. My previous comment was quite close on the headline which read

"Scots drink too much' despite fall in alcohol per person sold"

The "journalism" and politics behind this article leave me lost for words. I simply cannot articulate my contempt for Matheson or the BBC without resort to expletives. I have no doubt at all that the the BBC has become a vehicle for propaganda and I can see no reason for it being allowed to continue as is. The British public is being deceived and manipulated by a much cherished national institution.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

It's almost like you are a fly on their wall. That's exactly what I expect they are thinking.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Something like this, perhaps?

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Yes, but that's what they did in August. This set of results was yesterday. Nothing but tumbleweed since.

Ivan D said...

Agreed but the preliminary reports will have been circulated long before they hit the public domain allowing the activists and their friends ample warning to preempt them. Hence the article in August and the tumbleweed now. The BBC reports what suits its agenda. The idea that it is an impartial broadcaster of UK "news" is an increasingly ridiculous concept, .

Frank J said...

It's, frankly, of no interest at all to me and others I know whether drinking rates/consumption rise or fall. Tumbleweed aptly describes our attitude. Where's the interest, here? We can see no possible gain in this knowledge. Sure, to the companies, fine, but to us? pst.......

If anyone has lost a relative to what they ascribe as the 'demon drink', then, surely, that is more indicative of a failing family than any fault on the rest of us.

Still, I suppose it keeps these interfering bastards off the dole queue. But gainfully employed is hardly how I'd describe them.

Legiron said...

I'm doing my best, but at these prices it's hard to keep the average up! No wonder Scotland is drinking less (officially). Even supermarket prices are vicious now, fortunately home brewing is easy.

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