Global alcohol consumption

An article in The Economist reports that the world’s inhabitants drank the equivalent of 6.1 liters (1.6 gallons) of pure alcohol per person in 2005, according to a report from the World Health Organization. The biggest boozers are mostly found in Europe and in the former Soviet states. Moldovans are the most bibulous, getting through 18.2 liters (4.8 gallons) each, nearly 2 liters (1/2 gallon) more than the Czechs in second place. Over 10 liters (2.6 gallons) of a Moldovan's annual intake is reckoned to be 'unrecorded' home-brewed liquor, making it particularly harmful to health. Drinking such moonshine accounts for almost 30% of the world's total alcohol consumption. The WHO estimates that alcohol results in 2.5 million deaths a year, more than AIDS or tuberculosis. In Russia and its former satellite states one in five male deaths is caused by drink.
Sue Hodge

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