A tiny but significant change has come about in Americans’ drinking habits: wine has overtaken beer as the nation’s favourite alcoholic drink.
The yearly Gallup Consumption Habits poll in the US says that 39% of Americans drink wine more often than any other alcoholic beverage. Beer drinkers account for 36% with spirits drinkers making up 21%.
Whilst the number of spirits drinkers in the US has remained relatively stable, wine has become increasingly popular. In 2004, 33% of people were regular wine drinkers and 39% said they preferred beer. In 1992 only 27% said they drank wine on a regular basis.
Comparing the preferences of men with those of women over the past 20 years, men are becoming more and more inclined to drink wine, with figures for women staying relatively stable.
Beer is declining in popularity for both sexes. The figures also show that the gender divide continues with beer still the most popular drink for men and wine the most popular for women.
A further breakdown of the figures by age group shows wine as the preferred drink of the 30-49 and 50+ age brackets. In the 18-29 group, however, wine comes third place behind beer and spirits.
Written by Oliver Styles