4307.0.55.001 - Apparent Consumption of Alcohol, Australia, 2015-16  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 01/09/2017   
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LONG-TERM TRENDS

Over the past 50 years, levels of apparent consumption of different alcoholic beverages have changed substantially. In particular, the proportion of pure alcohol available for consumption in the form of beer has decreased considerably, from 75.2% in 1965-66 to 39.9% in 2015-16. This 2015-16 figure represents a slight increase from 39.5% in 2014-15, although still a decrease over recent decades, down from 44.6% in 2005-06 and 54.2% in 1995-96.

Over the period 1965-66 to 2015-16, wine consumption as a proportion of total pure alcohol consumption has increased from 13% to 37.5%, although the 2015-16 figure for wine does represents a slight decrease since 2014-15 (38.4%). During these 5 decades, spirits (including RTDs) have also increased from 11.8% to 18.8%, although their contribution to total pure alcohol available for consumption has steadied over the last 14 years (2001-02 18.8%).

Cider made up 3.8% of the total quantity of pure alcohol available for consumption in Australia in 2015-16, increasing over the last 10 years from 0.7% in 2005-06.

Graph Image for Apparent Consumption of Pure Alcohol, Beverage type as a proportion of all alcohol

Footnote(s): (a) Includes Ready to Drink (pre-mixed) beverages.

Source(s): Apparent Consumption of Alcohol, Australia, 2015-16



In terms of apparent consumption of pure alcohol per capita, total consumption has fluctuated over the past 50 years. From the early 1960s onwards apparent per capita consumption increased steadily, peaking at 13.1 litres of pure alcohol per person aged 15 years and over in 1974-75. Apparent per capita consumption remained relatively steady for the next 5-10 years, then declined over the following decade, reaching 9.8 litres per person in 1995-96.

Apparent consumption then gradually increased to 10.8 litres in both 2006-07 and 2007-08, before declining over recent years to 9.5 litres of pure alcohol per person in 2014-15. 9.5 litres of pure alcohol per person is the lowest level since 1962-63. In 2015-16, apparent consumption of alcohol per capita increased for the first time in 9 years, to 9.7 litres. The main contributor to the rise in pure alcohol available for consumption per capita in 2015-16 was beer, which also increased for the first time in 9 years to 3.9 litres of pure alcohol per person aged 15 years and over.

Graph Image for Apparent Consumption of Pure Alcohol, Per capita(a)

Footnote(s): (a) Litres per person aged 15 years and over. (b) Includes Ready to Drink (pre-mixed) beverages.

Source(s): Apparent Consumption of Alcohol, Australia, 2015-16