Some disturbing statistics have been released, showing Australians hit the liquor bottle hard during 2020.
We’ve purchased unprecedented amounts of grog during the pandemic, which has bumped retail alcohol sales to record levels.
New data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that supermarkets, bottle-os and the like, turned over a record $15.6 billion in alcohol sales across 2020, up almost a third on 2019 figures.
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Alcohol sales only grew by $195 million between 2018 and 2019, but they grew by $3.3 billion between 2019 and 2020.
December 2020 became the highest month ever for alcohol retail turnover at close to $2 billion, which the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education says is alarming.
“Alcohol companies have demonstrated their predatory instincts by aggressively marketing products during COVID-19 and this is resulting in big profits – but at what cost to the health and wellbeing of our families and communities?” CEO Caterina Giorgi said.
“Action is needed from governments across the country to address marketing practices of alcohol corporations.
“It’s also time to look at placing limits on late night and rapid online alcohol product delivery and boost funding for alcohol and other drug services to help reduce alcohol-fuelled harm.
“During COVID-19 we’ve seen alcohol retailers and online delivery companies engage in prolific marketing that promotes using alcohol as a way to cope during the pandemic. The increase seen by alcohol retailers suggests it’s working for them.
“Companies should not be able to use a global health crisis as an opportunity to sell more alcoholic products at the detriment of the health of Australians,” she said.