Changes of Nordic alcohol sales the last 20 years
The Nordic countries are reducing the gap between the countries’ alcohol sales
New statistics from the Nordic countries’ alcohol sales were recently released in Nordic Studies on Alcohol and Drugs (Volume 29, No 1). The countries reported are Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Greenland and the Pharao Islands. Over the last 20 years (1990-2010), there has been a significant change in some of the countries alcohol sales. In 1990, the Nordic countries showed big differences in the alcohol sales, from Norway with less than 5 litres in the bottom end and Greenland with close to 16 litres in the top end, followed by Denmark (around 12 litres) and Finland (around 10 litres). This huge gap has been reduced from both ends, with the greatest changes in the top end, and all the Nordic countries are today between 6 and 12 litres. Today, two main clusters can be identified among the Nordic countries – the first one represents Greenland, Denmark and Finland with alcohol sales at around 11 litres, and the second one Pharao Islands, Iceland, Sweden and Norway with alcohol sales at around 7 litres.
The statistics of alcohol sales will give a strong indication on a country’s consumption level, even though unrecorded alcohol must be added to get the total consumption levels. The unrecorded consumption levels are estimated to be 2.3 litres in Finland and 1.7 litres in Sweden per capita 15 years and over, which is a relatively small share compared to the recorded consumption (9.7 litres in Finland and 7.3 litres in Sweden).
More details on different kind of alcohol (beer, spirits and wine) and more research can be access in the new number of the Nordic Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.