BEER: Use and abuse

The problem of beer abuse is growing to become a major concern to stakeholders in the industry . This is so because despite the fact that millions of beer consumers enjoy the alcoholic  beverage responsibly, all over the world,  there are others who misuse or abuse it. They, as a result, create social problems for themselves and others, most of which are in turn, blamed on the beverage.

It is obviously not for nothing that Board of the Brewers of Europe embarked on a  campaign to promote responsible consumption in a meaningful way and build the image. Their  colleagues in government and public affairs have also developed a comprehensive information pack for the national Brewers’ Associations in Europe. The objective of the information pack is to facilitate discussions at national Brewers’ Association level, on a communications program towards sustainable category growth and engage participants in a discussion around what’s happening about responsible drinking.

Recently, the  Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) and Nigerian Breweries Plc (NB) have restated strong commitment to reduce road crashes in Nigeria, particularly those related to drunkenness.


Announcing commencement of the eighth yearly ‘Don’t Drink and Drive’ campaign, an initiative sponsored by Nigeria Breweries in partnership with FRSC  in Lagos, the organisations stated that there was need for intensified effort on responsible consumption of alcohol for a safer society.

Speaking at the event, Corps Marshal and Chief Executive FRSC, Boboye Oyeyemi said that “alcohol-related road traffic crashes remain a major global issue which has taken the front burner over the years”, adding that cases of excessive consumption of alcohol among drivers accounted for about 58 per cent of road crashes recorded in 2014 across the country.

The company has also collaborated with about twelve global alcohol business in five key areas such as: under-age drinking, marketing code of practices, consumer information and product innovation, drink-driving and retailer support.

Two years ago, the company and the Federal Road Safety Corps, the government agency responsible for safe driving on Nigerian roads, organised a “Don’t Drink and Drive” campaign in four states, covering 1,080 commercial drivers.  The company’s collaboration with  the FRSC had, in the last six years, been directed at communication to change drivers’ behaviour towards alcohol. Also, in collaboration with the International Center for Alcohol Policy, ICAP, the company has embarked upon an evaluation of previous enlightenment programs directed at the primary target groups.



Beer is an alcoholic beverage that carries a lot of benefits and myths. Interestingly, scientists have found that moderate drinkers who drink regularly but only in small amounts had lower body weights than their non-drinking peers and those who drank a lot at once.

There are at least two ways in which an alcoholic beverage such as beer might impact beneficially on the body:


First, through a direct physiological impact on bodily tissues and functions;  Second, through indirect impact, but founded equally on a physiological interaction

All the benefits of beer are however,  functions of moderate consumption. These  include:

Reduce risk of developing and dying from heart disease or possibly reduce the risk;

Possibly reduce risk of ischemic stroke (when the arteries to your brain become narrowed or blocked, causing severely reduced k of diabetes.

Scientists agree that the mellowing influence that moderate consumption of alcohol has, with its calming and relaxing impact, will of itself have a sparing effect on stress-related illnesses.

In the Second Special Report to Congress on Alcohol and Health from the National Institute on Alcohol and Health in 1974, some definitions of drinking habits were given:


Moderate occasional: People who drink alcohol only in small amounts at any one time, never enough to become intoxicated and less frequently than daily

Moderate: Same as above, except daily

Heavy occasional: People who get drunk occasionally, with periods of abstinence or moderation

Heavy: People who get drunk regularly and frequently

The World Health Organization suggests that 60 grams of alcohol per day should be a maximum. For a beer of 5% alcohol by volume, which equates to approximately 4% alcohol by weight, this means 1.5 litres

A look at the components of beer also reveals a lot: Beer is about 90-92% water, so it supports hydration.  Malted barley is the soul of beer, so it provides aroma and bitter flavors, and serves as a venutrients similar to that from cereal.

Hops add spice and are very rich source of micronutrients and phytonutrients. Yeast changes sugars into alcohol, thereby affecting the glycaemic index positively. Corn and other adjuncts give beer a milder and lighter-bodied flavor, so contributing to source of interest.

Prevention measures are however growing to reduce alcohol abuse and its consequences. Such measures include policies regulating alcohol-related behaviour on the one hand and community and educational interventions seeking to influence drinking behaviour on the other. There has also been an increasing global and local responsibility campaign to push healthy drinking lifestyle.



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