Today Is International Beer Day – and Czechs Know Just How To Celebrate

The first Friday in August is International Beer Day, a celebration originating in California that has been going since 2007. But in the Czech Republic, the number one beer drinking nation in the world, they don’t need a special day to drink beer… Photo credit: Freepik / For illustrative purposes.

Today is the first Friday in August, which means that it’s also International Beer Day. The celebration began in 2007 in Santa Cruz, California, and has since spread around the world. The three stated aims of International Beer Day are:

  1. To gather with friends and enjoy the taste of beer.
  2. To celebrate those responsible for brewing and serving beer.
  3. To unite the world under the banner of beer, by celebrating the beers of all nations together on a single day

All laudable aims, no doubt. But many Czechs might be asking themselves one valid question: “Why do we need a special day to drink beer?”

As it happens, every day is Beer Day in the Czech Republic. According to the Japanese brewer Kirin, which has been tracking international beer consumption since 1975, the Czech Republic has been the number one beer drinking country per capita every year since 1993 – the year the country came into existence. And not by a small margin, either: according to figures for 2018, released at the end of last year, Czechs drank 192 litres of beer per capita (so including children and non-drinkers), compared to 108 litres for second-placed Austria, just 56% of the Czech total. That works out at around 384 of the normal half-litre measures – or more than one velké pivo per day. Nine out of the ten biggest per capita beer consumers for 2018 were European countries, with Namibia sneaking into 9th place.

Data by Kirin Holdings.

In terms of overall beer consumption, the Czech Republic was ranked 19th according to the same report, drinking over 2 billion litres as a nation. Populous giants China (39 billion litres) and the USA (24 billion) predictably topped the list.

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