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close this bookAlcohol-related Problems as an Obstacle to the Development of Human Capital (WB)
close this folderTrends in production and consumption
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View the documentConsumption of alcohol
View the documentProduction of alcohol for consumption
View the documentTrade in beer, wine, and spirits

Production of alcohol for consumption

Total world production of beer nearly doubled between 1970 and 1989, increasing from 641 million hectoliters (mhl) in 1970 to 1115 mhl in 1989. During this period, production in Africa, Asia, and Latin America increased from 13 percent of world production to 29 percent. Increased output in a relatively small number of countries accounted for the majority of the rise in production. In Korea, for example, beer production increased from 0.9 millions hectoliters in 1970 to 12.1 mhl in 1989. Production also increased dramatically in Latin America. Between 1970 and 1989, Brazil increased production from 10.3 mhl to 55 mhl, Colombia increased from 7.2 mhl to 18.2, and Venezuela experienced a nearly three-fold increase, from 4 to 11 mhl. Regional production, which reflects these trends, is displayed in figure 5 for the period 1970 to 1989, while more detailed information is contained in Annex tables A-5.

Data on wine and spirits production are less reliable and less current. Data on wine production between 1948 and 1980, reveals that production of wine has increased considerably in Latin America, Europe and North America, while total world production has increased 23 percent. Data in Annex table A-6 for the period between 1965 and 1989 show that production of wine has increased dramatically in South Africa, Mexico, and Czechoslovakia, while it has fallen in traditionally high producer countries such as France and Italy. Although the trends are subject to fluctuations, there is a distinct upward trend in production (See figure 6). The increased wine production, combined with a concurrent fall in consumption in many of the heaviest wine drinking countries, has led to a growing surplus of production over consumption. The surplus in wine might lead to a decline in prices, which could lead to an increase in consumption in many developing countries. The underlying rate of growth is, however, much less rapid than that for beer or spirits, and the share of wine in world markets has therefore declined.

The production of spirits is concentrated in Europe, the Commonwealth of Independent States, the US and Canada. Annex Tables A-7 and A-10 present the available data on spirits production in 1965 and 1980. Total production per capita is very low for Africa, Asia (excluding Japan), and Australia and New Zealand. The available data indicate that production has declined in Latin America and increased in North America, Japan, and Europe.

Figure 4: Wine Consumption Per Capita By Country, highest to lowest

Figure 5: Beer Production. 1970 - 1989 By Region

Figure 6: Wine Production, 1948 - 1980 By Region