How much do people drink in Belarus?

how much people drink in belarusComing to any country you should be ready to share local traditions of eating and drinking. Though Russians are pretty famous in the words as people that can drink much there is not much info about Belarusians...

The most popular drink in Belarus is vodka and this is the main entertainment for a great part of people.  It is reported by the official statistics on critical levels of alcohol consumption per capita. Due to the latest WHO (World Health Organization) research in 2011 Belarus takes 10th place among 188 countries with 15.1 liters of pure alcohol per person for people of age over 15. But almost any country in that region is extremely close, so Belarus probably enjoys an amount of negative publicity. Russian Federation and Ukraine have almost the same result (15.76 and 15.60 litres respectively).

Mostly in other countries people drink less:

Moldova – 18.2
France – 13.6
Great Britain – 13.3
Germany – 12.8
Spain – 11.6
Italy – 10.6
Netherlands – 10.0
Saudi Arabia - 0.0 liters per person a year.

Vodka is one of the most popular products in Belarus, it is affordable for most people because is rather cheap: a bottle (0.5 liters) costs about 5$.The cheapest drink is a low quality “wine” (less than a dollar per bottle): a mixture of cheap alcohol, apple juice and coloring agents. This beverage is extremely popular among alcoholics.  Alcohol abuse exists due to not only high level of alcohol consumption, but the way of drinking, which usually consists of large quantities of alcohol in a comparatively short time period and often without accompanying meals.

А traditional tipple is home-distilled vodka or samogon, has a special position in Belarusian drinking culture. Samogon appeared in 14th century and was a way to get around a government monopoly on alcohol. The producing of home-made vodka in Belarus is illegal but in every village there’re those who continue making it in an underground way. Its production is allowed only in Dudutki museum complex and National park "Belovezshskaya pushcha". So this is a must for a tourist to visit these beautiful places and try some samogon!

So even if you're used to heavy drinks think twice before drinking with Belarusians! :)

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