One of the most obvious things I could tell you is that folks are drinking more at home compared to bars and restaurants now as a result of the coronavirus “stay at home” orders. Alcohol sales through online sales, grocery stores and liquor stores have increased more than 24% during the past couple months.
Much of the increased alcohol sales represents more of a shift in where people are drinking as a result of restaurants and bars shutting down their dine-in service. A recent study by Nielsen found that 28% of frequent on-premise drinkers are purchasing alcohol at a grocery store or liquor store compared to 15% of average drinkers who claimed to purchase more alcohol at a store.
The “stay at home” orders are being lifted and restaurants and bars are once again open for business. This is wonderful news for the economy and the job market in Missouri. However, problems could exist as a result of many Missourians shifting their alcohol intake from their home back to the restaurants and bars. We are creatures of habit and when we have a drink at home we do not have to worry about getting a ride home. We are not used to finding a designated driver or calling an Uber driver if we are already home. I am concerned that we will see a short-term increase in people driving home after a few restaurant or bar drinks until we get used to the routine of finding a ride. It may seem like an inconvenience now that the restaurants and bars are reopening to find a ride, but please do not drink and drive! Stay safe out there.
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