Alcohol Policy Highlights



Alcohol consumption in France has seen its biggest decline in a decade. In 2015, France issued a ban on digital marketing for alcohol and a ban on industry sponsorship of cultural or sporting events. There is a change in the way people in France use alcohol. For instance: [81]

For instance:

  • The proportion of daily alcohol users has fallen to under 9%, and is made up predominantly of men and those over 60.

  • Only 2% of 18 to 25-year-olds are using alcohol daily.

  • The majority of French adults now consume alcohol less than once a week


 In 2015, a public health bill announced comprehensive alcohol policies including: [82]

  • Minimum pricing

  • Regulation of alcohol marketing and advertising

  • Health labeling

  • Enforcement powers for environmental health officers to enforce laws on sale, supply and consumption of alcohol products



Thailand’s Alcohol Beverage Control Act of 2008 bans direct advertising and promotion of alcoholic beverages and sets the minimum age for alcohol use at 18. The law also requires products to carry warnings that drinking can hinder the ability to drive, and  restricts alcohol sales to certain hours and days. [83]



Slovenia has taken some important steps toward effective alcohol policy and introduced several measures to reduce alcohol use, including bans on alcohol advertising, limiting availability to young people, and road-safety legislation to reduce drink driving. [84]


Best Buy Policy Across the World


Alcohol Tax Increases

United Kingdom
A 10% increase in the general price of alcohol in England would show results
over the next 20 years including: [85]
• Reduce weekly consumption by 4.5%  
• Reduce alcohol-related deaths by approximately 1,300
• Reduce alcohol-related hospital admissions by approximately 61,000
• Reduce crime and work absence totaling £22.1bn


Saskatchewan, Canada
A 10% increase in minimum prices of alcohol reduced consumption of all alcoholic beverages by 8.4%. [86] 


British Columbia, Canada
A 10% increase in the average minimum price of all alcoholic beverages was associated with a 32% reduction in alcohol attributable deaths. [87]

In the past five years Kenya has raised taxes on bottled beer four times including a 43% increase that took effect in December 2015—the highest on the continent. [88] 


Regulating Availability

Regulating the hours alcohol is sold has the potential to prevent 54,000 injuries a year. [17] 

United States
States that increased the legal alcohol consumption age to 21 saw a 17% decrease in fatal vehicle crashes. [18] 


Raising the minimum legal drinking age from 18 to 21 years was estimated to decrease fatal nighttime crashes by 15%. [18]


Closing bars at 11 p.m. rather than permitting them to remain open for 24 hours led to a 44% drop in homicides. [69]  


Estonia’s restrictions on the sale of alcohol mirror those on tobacco. As of 2018, all alcohol must be placed behind screens or sold only from behind counters with a salesperson, limiting self-service and access to alcohol. [90] 


Limiting Advertising

A ban on alcohol advertisement on billboards, television and radio found 2,853 disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) averted per year. [89] 


Countries with greater advertising restrictions had a lower prevalence of hazardous drinking—31% in countries with no restrictions, 20% in countries with some restrictions and 14% in those with the greatest restrictions. [91]