Who Drinks the Most Alcohol?

Moldovans are the biggest drinkers in the world, consuming 4.81 gallons (18.22 liters) of alcohol a year per person age 15 or older — and more than half of that is thought to be homebrew. The global consumption of alcohol averages out to 1.62 gallons (6.13 liters) per person, with Russia and Eastern European countries drinking the most, followed by Britain, France, and other large Western European nations. People in the United States age 15 or older drink an average of 2.49 gallons (9.44 liters) of alcohol per year.

More on alcohol consumption:

  • Homebrewed alcohol, or moonshine, accounts for about 30 percent of the world's alcohol consumption.

  • The abuse of alcohol is estimated to lead to about 2.5 million deaths a year. In Russia and former Soviet satellite states, about one out of every five male deaths is caused by alcohol abuse.

  • High-income people tend to consume the most alcohol, with those in the highest income bracket drinking about 3 gallons (about 11 liters) of pure alcohol a year and those in the lowest income bracket drinking only about three-fourths of a gallon (about 3 liters) per year.

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