Tag Archives: distillation

World Alcohol Consumption: What Are People Drinking & How Much?

uganda waragi

Waragi; it comes in a plastic bag.

lately i’ve been reading up on what people distill & consume across the globe. i found this table on wikipedia. most notable, uganda consumes the highest percentage per capita of “other” (non- beer/wine/spirits), which is probably mainly in the form of waragi (which is a blanket term for a handful of distillates, of which bananas & palm are a common source).

south korea leads the world in spirits consumption by a surprisingly large margin (mainly soju, a sweet potato, barley and/or tapioca distillate), but if there were an official alcohol consumption olympics, moldova would go home with the lion’s share of the medals. moldovans consume beer, wine & spirits in roughly equal amounts (lots & lots). conversely, it’s no surprise that several middle eastern islamic states have the lowest overall consumption. and apparently, we americans like our beer, though i personally can’t stand the stuff (tastes like liquid bread… but i will partake in the occasional belgian ale).

it’s also interesting to dig deeper & learn about what the principal crops are that are grown in different regions of the globe, as well as factors like geography, climate, economy, and what the people who live in each region have done with those crops in re; distilling alcohol. some distilling traditions go back almost 10 centuries, as with the cultures that inhabit(ed) what’s now the US southwest, mexico and parts of central america.