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Home drinking in the UK: Trends and causes

Home drinking in the UK: Trends and causes

Foster, John H. ORCID: 0000-0002-7662-8203 and Ferguson, Colin S. (2012) Home drinking in the UK: Trends and causes. Alcohol and Alcoholism, 47 (3). pp. 355-358. ISSN 0735-0414 (Print), 1464-3502 (Online) (doi:

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Aims: To explore the trend in the UK to consume alcohol at home rather than at licensed premises. Methods: A Medline search entering the terms ‘home drinking’, ‘alcohol’ and ‘adult’ covering the period 2000–2011yielded 48 articles, of which 6 met the criteria to be included in the review. Grey literature including survey and market research data were reviewed. Results: In the UK, since 1970 there has been trend for beer to be consumed at home more often than in licensed premises and that the overall trend towards greater home drinking has increased since 2000. The main reasons given are convenience, cost, safety, autonomy and stress relief. There has also been an increase in the practice known as ‘pre-loading’ (drinking before going out). Adults who drink mainly at home report that they are aware that they run a risk of higher overall alcohol consumption but tend to play down the possibility that increased consumption may lead to longer-term harm. Conclusion: Home drinking trends may have long-term public health consequences. Greater understanding of the drivers of this trend will help policy-makers to respond to these societal changes.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: [1] First published online: February 27, 2012. [2] First published in print: May 2012. [3] Published as: Alcohol and Alcoholism, (2012), Vol. 47, (3), pp. 355-358. [4] This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in Alcohol and Alcoholism following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version John H. Foster and Colin S. Ferguson, Home Drinking in the UK: Trends and Causes, Alcohol and Alcoholism (May/June 2012) 47(3): 355-358 first published online February 27, 2012 doi:10.1093/alcalc/ags020 is available online at: [5] Alcohol and Alcoholism is published on behalf of The Medical Council on Alcohol and ESBRA European Society for Biomedical Research on Alcoholism.
Uncontrolled Keywords: alcohol and health, risk prediction, social policy, public health policy
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Pre-2014 Departments: School of Health & Social Care
School of Health & Social Care > Family Care & Mental Health Department
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2016 09:22

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