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Introduction

Follow Guyon Epsiner, an award-winning journalist living in New Zealand, as he talks with several individuals who provide insight into the magnitude of the effects of alcohol and drinking culture, specifically the associated harms felt by community members. He even speaks to someone from the alcohol industry who tries to argue for the potential benefits of alcohol. This documentary, however, can see through this and dives into the predatory nature of these companies, such as how poorer communities are riddled with liquor stores, and how the harms that communities endure are ignored.

Read Guyon’s Book: ‘The Drinking Game’
Watch Guyon’s Documentary: ‘Wasted’

Published in 2021

Viewing Time: 45 minutes

Quotes

“We’ve got an environment that we’ve created through cheap alcohol readily available, highly marketed. It sends the signals of a pro-drinking culture, and that’s something we’ve got to turn around.”

“It’s not until you stop drinking that you actually realize that Aotearoa is drowning in booze. If you count all the on-and-off licenses, there are about 11,000 places you can buy booze, or one outlet for every 330 adults. So, yep, the liquor industry has got you covered. And they’ve decided that people in the poor areas are going to be some of their best customers.”

Screenshot from PROOF: New Zealand Drinking Culture; Alcohol & Communities

“You don’t know how it’s harmed my people, or if you do, you’re deliberately ignoring it. Deliberately ignoring it because you have a responsibility to make profits for your shareholders.”

RAAWIRI RATUU

“Even as children, we are heavily exposed to alcohol advertising. An Otago University study put cameras on 168 children aged between 11 and 13. It found that kids are exposed to liquor advertising, on average, nearly five times a day. Raawiri Ratuu points out that in that study, tamariki Māori had five times the exposure to alcohol marketing than European children.”

“So where do young people get their information about alcohol? In high schools, they get it from SMASHED. It’s a drama-based program taken up by about 100 New Zealand schools. It’s funded by a charity called The Tomorrow Project‘a charitable organization that’s funded by the industry to put in play programs that will help create a moderate drinking culture in New Zealand’. It’s a charity funded by the beer, wines, and spirits industries.”

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Continue Learning

Hey there! I hope you found this resource useful! If you’re interested in learning more about the topics discussed, you can browse through these additional resources. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you need anything.

Alcoholism

New Zealand Drinking Culture

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