In 2016, households in the European Union (EU) spent 1.6% of their total consumption expenditure on alcoholic beverages. This represents a total expenditure of almost €130 billion, equivalent to 0.9% of EU GDP or over €250 per EU inhabitant. It should be noted that this does not include alcoholic beverages paid for in restaurants and hotels.
Households' annual expenditure on alcoholic beverages is roughly equivalent to their expenditure on medical products, appliances and equipment, and slightly higher than what they spent on social protection or education in 2016.
Weight of household expenditure on alcohol highest in the Baltic EU Member States
In 2016, across the EU Member States for which data are available, households in the three Baltic States devoted the largest share of their total expenditure to alcoholic beverages: Estonia (5.6%), Latvia (4.8%) and Lithuania (4.2%). They were followed by the Czech Republic and Poland (both 3.6%), Hungary and Finland (both 2.9%).
At the opposite end of the scale, the lowest proportions of household spending on alcoholic beverages were recorded in Spain (0.8%), Greece and Italy (both 0.9%), ahead of Austria (1.3%), Portugal (1.4%) and Germany (1.5%).
The source dataset can be found here.
Share of expenditure on alcohol increased the most in Cyprus and the Czech Republic
Between 2006 and 2016, the share of alcoholic beverages in total household expenditure remained roughly stable in the vast majority of Member States.
The highest increases over this 10-year period were recorded in Cyprus (from 1.6% of total household expenditure in 2006 to 2.0% in 2016, or a rise of 0.4 percentage points – pp) and the Czech Republic (also + 0.4 pp, from 3.2% to 3.6%).
In contrast, the share of alcoholic beverages in total household expenditure fell significantly between 2006 and 2016 in Lithuania (from 5.2% in 2006 to 4.2% in 2016, or a decrease of 1.0 pp), Bulgaria, Latvia and Finland (all -0.5 pp).