Annual Database of National Beverage Consumption Volumes and Expenditures, 1950 to 2015
Since the 1950s, the consumption of alcoholic beverages has changed very considerably around the world. In high-income countries, consumers tended to drink mostly what could be best produced domestically (spirits in the cold north, wine in temperate climates, and beer in countries too cold for winegrapes yet warm enough to grow malting barley). With increasing globalization and interactions between cultures, however, countries are converging in their beverage consumption patterns. In emerging economies, meanwhile, much of their alcohol was produced at home and not recorded, but that too is changing with their urbanization and income growth.
This new database covers all countries of the world, introduces two new summary indicators to capture the extent of convergence in national alcohol consumption levels and in their mix of beverages, and distinguishes countries according to whether their alcoholic focus was on wine, beer or spirits in the early 1960s as well as their geographic region and their real per capita income. For recent decades expenditure data are included and we compare alcohol with soft drink retail expenditure, and show what difference it makes when WHO estimates of unrecorded alcohol volumes are included as part of total alcohol consumption.
A report summarizing the data is available as Wine Economics Research Centre Working Paper 0117.
The data are in three Excel files that are freely downloadable below. Please acknowledge the source as: Holmes, A.J. and K. Anderson, Annual Database of National Beverage Consumption Volumes and Expenditures, 1950 to 2015. Wine Economics Research Centre, University of Adelaide