US Citizens See Alcohol as Dangerous

A new Gallup poll suggests that 71-75% of US adults see alcohol as having a negative effect on society.

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Gallup Poll
Gallup Poll

As Lewis Perdue reports in the US online publication Wine Industry Insight, a new Gallup poll reveals that a "vast majority" of US citizens believe alcohol to have a negative impact.

Three quarters of the respondents - all adults - responded  that its consumption has a 'somewhat' or 'very' negative effect on society, an opinion which - strikingly - was shared by an only slightly smaller - 71% - proportion of drinkers.

Perhaps surprisingly, fewer respondents think alcohol has a deleterious effect on its consumers, but the proportion who believed this was still 71% of US adults and 65% of drinkers.

For context, just under half of US citizens are infrequent or non-drinkers. The 2016 US National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) - an annual survey of nearly 270,000 people aged 12 or older - found that 50.7 percent of those surveyed said that they drank alcohol in the 30 days prior to the survey, and were defined as current alcohol drinkers.

Wine drinkers represent a smaller but still statistically important cohort. According to the Wine Intelligence US Landscapes 2020 report, the US had 77m ‘regular' wine drinkers in 2019 - approximately 1 in 3 American adults, down from an estimated 88m in 2015. 

Wine professionals may claim that wine should not be included in the general heading of 'alcohol', given its role as an accompaniment to food, but these figures, which suggest that substantial numbers of wine drinkers share the views of spirits, beer and other alcohol consumers, may not help them in their efforts against legislators seeking to limit the entire sector.


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