Russia classifies beer as alcoholic

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    TheMissingno.'s Avatar
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    Default Russia classifies beer as alcoholic

    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has signed a bill that officially classifies beer as alcoholic.

    Until now anything containing less than 10% alcohol in Russia has been considered a foodstuff.

    The move, signed into law on Wednesday, will allow ministers to control the sale of beer in the same way that spirits are controlled.

    Russian alcohol consumption is already twice the critical level set by the World Health Organization.

    Although vodka has long been the traditional tipple in Russia, beer has soared in popularity, being marketed as a healthier alternative to spirits.

    Over the past decade, beer sales in Russia have risen more than 40% while vodka sales have fallen by nearly 30%.

    Correspondents say it is common to see people swigging beer in the street and in parks as if they are drinking soft drinks.

    It is not restricted to certain stores and is sold around the clock.

    "The law brings some order into the sale of beer," Vadim Drobiz, director of the Centre for Federal and Regional Alcohol Market Studies, told US broadcaster Bloomberg.

    Last year the Russian beer industry was hit by a 200% tax hike on its products as ministers sought to bring consumption under control.

    The new measures - which come into effect in 2013 - will stop alcohol being sold in unlicensed kiosks, ban its sale from stores between certain hours and restrict its advertising.

    In 2009 President Medvedev ordered the government to prepare draft laws on a package of measures to counter growing alcohol abuse.
    Fun fact: While you need to be 18 to buy alcohol in Russia, there is no legal drinking age. I guess before this you didn't even have to be 18 to buy beer.

    Oops, forgot the source!
    Last edited by TheMissingno.; 17th October 2012 at 09:17 PM.
    That's nice.

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    I poke your snoot UnovaCastaway's Avatar
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    Default Re: Russia classifies beer as alcoholic

    Wow, they didn't consider it alcohol before?!

    Shows you how lenient European countries are when it comes to "alcohol." Meanwhile, when you're from the US, alcohol is considered a forbidden fruit until you're in your 20s and even then it's supposed to be handled with care in public.

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    Let's get funky! Gama's Avatar Former Head Administrator
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    Default Re: Russia classifies beer as alcoholic

    Quote Originally Posted by UnovaCastaway View Post
    Shows you how lenient European countries are when it comes to "alcohol." Meanwhile, when you're from the US, alcohol is considered a forbidden fruit until you're in your 20s and even then it's supposed to be handled with care in public.
    Yeah if you think Russia is representative of European countries in any single way at all, you really need to do some research into the world beyond (insert your country here).

    Anyway, with regards to the actual news - this is completely crazy. Although with regards to there being "no legal drinking age", that's actually the case in lots of developed countries: in practice it is as difficult in these countries for kids to drink (assuming there is an age that you must be to buy alcohol that is) as it is in those where there is a legal drinking age. That said, I'm guessing those barriers didn't exist before this was enacted in Russia - crazy.

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    I poke your snoot UnovaCastaway's Avatar
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    Default Re: Russia classifies beer as alcoholic

    Quote Originally Posted by G-Mama View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by UnovaCastaway View Post
    Shows you how lenient European countries are when it comes to "alcohol." Meanwhile, when you're from the US, alcohol is considered a forbidden fruit until you're in your 20s and even then it's supposed to be handled with care in public.
    Yeah if you think Russia is representative of European countries in any single way at all, you really need to do some research into the world beyond (insert your country here).

    .
    I admit, the UK is the only European country I've been to, and I've read or heard some things about some others, but they still seem more lenient than the US.

    The Russian sale restrictions seem similar to what some US states and Canadian provinces have had in place about when and where to sell.

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    TheMissingno.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Russia classifies beer as alcoholic

    Quote Originally Posted by G-Mama View Post
    Anyway, with regards to the actual news - this is completely crazy. Although with regards to there being "no legal drinking age", that's actually the case in lots of developed countries: in practice it is as difficult in these countries for kids to drink (assuming there is an age that you must be to buy alcohol that is) as it is in those where there is a legal drinking age. That said, I'm guessing those barriers didn't exist before this was enacted in Russia - crazy.
    You sure it's difficult for kids to drink? In the US, teenagers just get someone older to buy alcohol for them and that works, even with the risk of a $1000 fine per drinker for the person who buys the alcohol. I imagine people would be much more willing if there was no risk.
    That's nice.

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    Let's get funky! Gama's Avatar Former Head Administrator
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    Default Re: Russia classifies beer as alcoholic

    Quote Originally Posted by TheMissingno. View Post

    You sure it's difficult for kids to drink? In the US, teenagers just get someone older to buy alcohol for them and that works, even with the risk of a $1000 fine per drinker for the person who buys the alcohol. I imagine people would be much more willing if there was no risk.
    I don't think you understood what I meant.

    I was taking what you said in the OP as total gospel and assuming that it's correct that in Russia there's no legal drinking age, as such, but there is an age which you have to be to buy alcohol and I was saying that that is the case in many places and that doesn't actually make it much easier for kids to drink. I didn't say it was difficult for kids to drink in the US, I said it wasn't any more or less difficult than in countries where it was technically legal for kids to drink, just not to buy alcohol. You see, the fact is you refer to the difficulty (or lack thereof) in buying alcohol in the US and precisely those barriers exist in other countries: kids can't buy alcohol and those who buy alcohol for them incur huge fines and criminal records (though still do it anyway). The purchase of alcohol by minors is actually the only thing that the government can really have any impact on at all: if kids find alcohol, whether it is legal for them to drink it in their country or not really makes no difference to how difficult it is for them to drink it.

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