A significant portion of alcohol produced, sold, and consumed around the world is not reflected in official statistics. These beverages are generally not taxed or regulated, and their sale and purchase cannot be easily monitored or quantified.
The beverages included in this general category of noncommercial alcohol are:
- traditional drinks produced for home consumption or limited local trade (whether licit or illicit);
- counterfeit products and illicit mass-produced drinks;
- surrogate, or nonbeverage, alcohol.
The Noncommercial Alcohol initiative of Global Actions on Harmful Drinking is focused on measuring the informal alcohol market in nine different countries. During the first stage of this project (2010), we have:
- gathered data on noncommercial alcohol in nine countries using new standardized methodology; and
- produced technical reports based on the data collection.
The countries of focus for the Noncommercial Alcohol initiative are Belarus, Botswana, Brazil, China, India, Kenya, Mexico, Russia, and Sri Lanka. The stakeholders working together in this effort include research institutions in each country, international academic experts, and donor and development agencies.
During 2011-2012 we are implementing expanded studies in the same countries.