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Objective: To analyse the impact of the alcohol market on the implementation of strong-willed public alcohol abuse prevention policies based on a critical review of the literature.Method: Documentary research and analysis of the alcohol market economic data were performed. An overview of public alcohol abuse prevention policies was conducted from a historical perspective by distinguishing drunkenness control policies, protection of vulnerable populations, and the fight against drink driving and drinking in the workplace.Results: Public alcohol abuse prevention policies are primarily designed to reduce the harmful consequences of alcohol occurring as a result of a drinking episode (motor vehicle accident, highway accidents, etc.), while neglecting the long-term consequences (cancer, cirrhosis, etc.). Moreover, while taxation is one of the major public health tools used to reduce the costs of alcohol-related damage on society, the State exercises legislative and tax protection for alcoholic beverages produced in France. In particular, wine benefits from a lower tax rate than other stronger forms of alcohol (spirits, liquors, etc.). The economic weight of the alcohol market can provide an explanation for these public alcohol abuse prevention policies.Conclusion: In view of the mortality caused by alcohol abuse, France must implement a proactive public policy. An alcohol taxation policy based on the alcohol content, a minimum unit pricing for alcohol, or higher taxes on alcohol are public policies that could be considered in order to reduce alcohol-related mortality.


  • alcohol drinking
  • health policy
  • mortality
  • public policy
  • taxation
  • taxes
Miléna Spach
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