Opinion

Irish drinkers consume 5.6 drinks per pub visit

On their last visit to a pub/club Irish drinkers consumed 5.6 drinks on average, almost three times the amount of most other EU consumers with figures suggesting that 69 per cent of drinkers in the EU drink two or less drinks per drinking occasion.

The research undertaken by Millward Brown Lansdowne in January 2012 found that Irish people consume almost three times as much alcohol as their European counterparts on any one drinking occasion.

This trend is particularly prevalent among students, who are living away from home for the first time and get caught up in the social aspects of student life.

That’s according to Fionnuala Sheehan, Chief Executive of drinkaware.ie, who was speaking recently at the launch of DARE2BDRINKAWARE.ie 2013, the film and multimedia competition for third-level students, aimed at promoting the responsible use of alcohol.

It has been run on an annual basis for the past six years.  For the 2013 competition, students are being invited to submit film and multimedia entries on the theme of ‘pacing our drinking’.

According to Fionnuala Sheehan, “In overall terms we’re drinking about a fifth less alcohol than a decade ago and we’re drinking less often than our European counterparts including those in the UK and Northern Ireland. However, when we drink, we drink more. This pattern of heavy, episodic drinking is particularly prevalent amongst young adults including students attending third level institutions in Ireland”.

She said, “Peer pressure remains a significant driver in the drinking patterns of young people. We want to empower young people to resist the pressure to drink or to drink more. If you are drinking, the best pace to drink at is your own. By pacing our drinking – that is drinking less and more slowly on an occasion of drinking – we enable ourselves to get more out of our nights and our weekends.

“Through DARE2BDRINKAWARE.ie we want to encourage students to explore our relationship with alcohol in Ireland, our particular Irish drinking culture and our pattern of drinking. We want them to develop messages that they consider relevant to their peers and to communicate these through film and interactive multimedia.”

DARE2BDRINKAWARE.ie is open to all third-level students over the age of 18.  Entries for the competition can be produced in the form of a short film or interactive website.  Entries must focus on pacing our drinking, aligning the competition’s aim of promoting the responsible use of alcohol and/or challenging anti-social drinking behaviours.

Students interested in submitting an entry to DARE2BDRINKAWARE.ie  have until 23rd November to complete a short proposal outlining the idea behind their entry.  They will then have until March 2013 to develop and complete their multimedia or film project.  Entries are judged by a high-profile panel of industry experts, and a prize fund of €5,000 is up for grabs in the competition.

“We see DARE2BDRINKAWARE.ie as a way for the film and multimedia creatives of the future to get a first step on the career ladder, gain exposure to industry insiders, network and make important industry links,” said Fionnuala Sheehan, “That’s why we always assemble a high-profile judging panel and include acclaimed film and multimedia industry professionals in the line-up for our awards ceremony each year.”

Last year, well-known blogger and Community Manager at WorldIrish.com Darragh Doyle and Ciarán Norris, Head of Digital with Mindshare, were amongst the competition judges.

Further information about DARE2BDRINKAWARE.ie, as well as guidelines and an application form for entrants, are available on the competition website, www.DARE2BDRINKAWARE.ie.

Winning entries to previous DARE2BDRINKAWARE.ie competitions can be viewed at http://www.dare2bdrinkaware.ie/2012/04/congratulations-and-celebrations/

Sign up for Drinks Industry Ireland

Get a free weekly update on Drinks Industry trade news, direct to your inbox. Sign up now, it's Free