By Staff Writer
A reduction in the cost of alcohol has a direct impact on the rate of addiction and mortality, according to a new study presented at the International Scientific Forum on Alcohol Research.
Investigators found that deaths increased by 2.9 per 100,000 person-years among men and women between the ages of 50 and 69 in Finland after the country dramatically reduced alcohol taxes in 2004. Taxes on spirits were cut by 30 percent and wine charges dropped by 3 percent.
There has been significant debate among politicians and advocacy groups about the role taxes should play in reducing the burden of alcohol-related problems in society. Anti-drinking groups argue that higher taxes would make alcohol less affordable, thereby reducing the number of people who abuse it. The findings provide evidence to support their point.
The researchers said that the results of their investigation show a direct relationship between alcohol prices and consumption levels. These findings should be considered by lawmakers when they are crafting legislation related to the issue. This could have a dramatic impact on public health.