New UNSW Sydney research finds that buying liquor online is too easy.
Drug and Alcohol Review published the research conducted in mid-2019, this month.
The researchers examined the sales, marketing and delivery practices of the 65 most popular online alcohol retailers in Australia.
- 69% of websites would leave alcohol unattended at an address without having verified the purchasers age.
- 12% offered delivery within two hours.
- 8% allowed customer to purchase alcohol through a ‘buy now, pay later’ scheme.
- 20% offered a 750ml bottle of wine for under $5.
- 5% offered discounts for buying more.
And there was no requirement for delivery drivers to hold Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) certification.
Australian online alcohol sales were worth an estimated $569.4 million in 2019, representing 4.6% of total sales.
“This is creating new problems around minors accessing alcohol, the sale of alcohol to intoxicated persons and easy access to cheap alcohol – from $2.88 for a 750ml bottle of wine, which is cheaper than a cup of coffee,” says study co-author and UNSW Master of Public Health graduate, Stephanie Colbert.
Standards need to rise
Ms Colbert explains, “The regulations are very very lax online. The fact that online alcohol is accessible to minors, intoxicated persons can just get a top-up and it’s so easy to access cheap alcohol, at any time from any location, are all major concerns.”
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