May 25, 2009

Poland’s higher taxes cut vodka drinking

Poland registered a 75-percent drop in vodka drinking alone in the first three months of this year because of excise tax hikes, authorities said.

Poles purchased 21.1 million liters of alcoholic drinks, including vodka, in the first quarter of 2009, which is some 30 percent less than in the same period in 2008, the Polish spirits industry organization said Monday.

Officials of the industry organization said the considerable drop in the sale of vodka was prompted by the rise of excise taxes by 9 percent as of January, coupled with the smaller purchasing power of Poles due to the global economic crisis.

The sale of beer dropped 10 percent in Poland in the first quarter this year when compared with the same period last year, beer producers said.

Melania Popiel of Carlsberg Poland said the sale of beer has been decreasing since early last year.