Trends in Alcohol - Scotland

12 Jun 2015

Patterns in alcohol consumption and harm across Scotland continue to be of interest to anyone seeking to understand this and target activity to reduce alcohol misuse where it occurs. 

The Scotch Whisky Association, the Scottish Beer & Pub Association, the Wine & Spirits Trade Association, the Portman Group and the National Association of Cider Makers have produced document to provide members and stakeholders with a single point of reference on data covering alcohol consumption, underage issues, health harms and crime in Scotland.

The consumption of alcohol, and particularly the impact of its misuse, remains a key consideration in terms of public policy making at both local and national levels. The diverse nature of harms and patterns of consumption means public policy has the ability to impact on a range of stakeholders beyond industry including local authorities, health professionals, the emergency services, community groups and the public.

To fulfil the demand for information and data about trends in these areas there are a wide variety of data sources that cover various different aspects of alcohol consumption and harms. With no universal source of data available statistics are often quoted in isolation
without considering the wider context in which they are set. It is vital that the facts on the scale of the problem are presented clearly and in the appropriate context to enable the debate to focus on the issues that remain.

This document aims to provide a single point of reference by pulling together the latest comparable data on alcohol consumption, underage issues, health harms and crime from official Government sources. While this does not include all available data and some
data included has queries associated with it, this has been highlighted as appropriate.

Where possible data used is from a base year of 2000 to the most recent data available. If data collection started later than 2000 or data is no longer collected, the most recent data samples are labelled and included for information.

All data referenced is published by independent organisations and is not financed or commissioned by the alcohol industry. All data is correctly reproduced to best knowledge of all associations. All data and narrative is intended to be used for illustrative purposes only and for all other purposes the original source should be used.

Comparisons to other nations
This document is primarily focussed on Scotland. However, where appropriate, comparisons with Great Britain or England and Wales have been provided. It should be noted that these do not necessarily represent the full range of data available on those geographies.