Aussies spend more on alcohol than education
Source: The Spirits Business
by Melita Kiely
14th September, 2015
Australians spend more money on alcohol each week than they do on education, personal care and tobacco, a new study has revealed.
The data compiled by Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) revealed an average household spends AU$32.20 on alcohol each week, compared to AU$30.60 on education, AU$24 on personal care and US$12.50 on tobacco.
The amount splashed on alcohol is almost equal to that of fuel and power, which averaged AU$32.50.
While analysing alcohol expenditure and how this correlates to housing and financial situations, the report also supported the link between financial disadvantage and alcohol.
Dr Jason Jiang, lead researcher at CAPR (Centre for Alcohol Policy Research), which funded the study, said: “Better understanding the relationship between what Australians are spending on alcohol and their personal and financial situation provides valuable insights to inform both alcohol and financial policies and programmes.
“Alcohol has a substitutive effect, where it replaces essential goods and services like utilities, food, clothes, footwear and health services.
“So a reduction in alcohol spending in a household may save money for necessities and improve living standards.”
Australians spend and buy more alcohol on a weekly basis from retail stores (AU$26) than clubs and bars (AU$15), according to the research.
Households on lower income in the Northern Territory had the highest weekly spend on alcohol at AU$55, as well as the highest rates of reported financial trouble compared to any other Australian state or territory.
“It’s very clear the alcohol industry deliberately targets the most vulnerable in our community which is why you will find a greater concentration of off-licence outlets in lower socio-economic areas.
“Policies that prevent the opening of bottles shops on every street corner in these neighbourhoods would have a direct impact on household alcohol expenditure, and help reduce financial hardship for many Australian households.”