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Wine stocks on the rise as prices pump up demand

Mar 2nd, 2010 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

winemainTHE VOLUME of wine on sale rose 1.1% in 2009 compared with the previous year, says Statistics New Zealand.

That’s 95.3 million litres of wine – a 20.2% contribution to the total volume of alcoholic beverages available in 2009, compared with 19.4% a year earlier.
The total volume of alcohol available for consumption was down 3.1 percent from 2008 to 2009.

Professor Sellman, professor of psychiatry and addiction medicine at Otago University and spokesperson for Alcohol Action NZ, says wine is very cheap in New Zealand.

Professor Sellman says Alcohol Action NZ – a national group seeking changes to the way alcohol is supplied, marketed and sold – held a competition to find the cheapest bottle of wine during a lecture tour last year.

The winner was a $4.99 bottle of Nobilo Five Fathoms Unoaked – 67% percent cheaper than some bottled water products.
“Competition between the drug (alcohol) pushers will tend to drive down prices of alcohol,” says Professor Sellman.

 Low prices drive increased consumption, especially in concert with heavy marketing and advertising and easy accessibility, he says.

“What the government needs to do is introduce a minimum price per unit of alcohol and then progressively raise the tax on alcohol at a rate that doesn’t drive alcohol underground.”

Alcohol Action NZ advocates The 5+ Solution, based on the World Health Organisation-sponsored publication, Alcohol: No Ordinary Commodity (written by some of the leading alcohol and public health scientists in the world).wine2

The 5+ Solution suggests:

1. Raise alcohol prices
2. Raise the purchase age
3. Reduce alcohol accessibility
4. Reduce marketing and advertising
5. Increase drink-driving counter-measures
PLUS: Increase treatment opportunities for heavy drinkers.

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is a Whitireia Journalism student.
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