National Survey: American Attitudes on Alcohol

According to a bipartisan national poll commissioned by the Center for Alcohol Policy, the American public overwhelmingly supports the current system of alcohol regulation in the U.S. Additionally, the current regulatory system for alcohol is viewed by Americans as necessary to keeping the public safe.

The national survey of 1,005 adults over the age of 21 was conducted using an online methodology by a bipartisan team of pollsters, Whitman Insight Strategies and WPA Opinion Research, on behalf of the Center for Alcohol Policy from April 27 – May 3, 2015.  The margin of error is ± 3.1%.

Key findings include:

Americans agree that regulation is important, especially when it comes to alcohol. 

  • 89% of adults agree that it is very important to keep the American alcohol industry regulated.
  • 82% agree that parents, police officers and retailers already have a difficult challenge keeping alcohol out of the hands of minors. Getting rid of alcohol rules, regulations and safeguards could make the problem worse.
  • 94% believe that people selling or delivering alcohol should verify that a person is 21 or older before they sell or deliver alcohol to that person.

Additionally, Americans do not think alcohol is just like other consumer products, and they support regulations on alcohol that are not found on other consumer goods. 

  • 70% believe alcohol should not be sold just like other consumer goods.
  • 84% support the current legal drinking age of 21 or older.

Americans are very happy with the variety of alcohol options currently available to them.

  • 91% of adults agree that it is easy to find a wide variety of beer, wine and liquor in their community.
  • 84% agree that there are more local and craft beers and liquor available in their community today than ever before.

Americans also believe that local businesses that understand the local community should manage local alcohol distribution and sales. 

  • 81% support the rights of individual states to determine their own laws and regulations regarding the manufacture, distribution and sale of alcohol.


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Center for Alcohol Policy
277 S. Washington Street Suite 500-A Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: (703) 519-3090