Will Black Friday 2013 See More Deals on Alcohol?

Black Friday is famed for its big ticket deals on electrical items, and other luxury goods that will make great Christmas presents: many consider Black Friday (which is the day after Thanksgiving) to be the first official shopping day for Christmas. But for Black Friday in 2012 liquor stores in Virginia decided to get in on the Black Friday action. Virginia’s Alcoholic Beverage Control (otherwise known as ABC) stores, offered extended opening hours and discounted alcohol offers for Black Friday in November 2012. 339 State-run liquor stores across the state opened early, at 7am, and offered discounts of up to 50% and shoppers that were spending more than $50 in one purchase were then offered an additional 10% off their shopping. The result of these Black Friday discount deals were alcohol sales of $59 million across the state: an increase of 86 per cent on alcohol sales across the state from the same day the year before. Like all other Black Friday deals on other kinds of merchandise, the aim of the Black Friday liquor deals was to allow customers to buy premium brands for gifts and holiday entertaining at discounted prices. But concerns were raised that such discounted alcohol deals would lead to binge drinking or heavy episodic drinking among the American populous and the negative health problems associated with that , if they were able to purchase large quantities of alcohol at prices almost as inexpensive as soda.

Negative Effects of Black Friday Liquor Deals

The negative effects of liquor deals being widely available on Black Friday have already been experienced in North Little Rock, where a thirty year old mother left her infant child alone to go liquor shopping. Amy McIntosh left her 11-month-old child in her house without any supervision so that she could go shopping for alcohol and take advantage of the available Black Friday liquor deals on Black Friday in 2012. McIntosh was charged with with two different counts: child endangerment, and obstruction by giving law enforcers false information about her identity. Ms McIntosh’s crime was discovered when a neighbor heard the baby crying and went to investigate: she found the baby on the floor in a soiled diaper and with a bloody nose.

The Impact of Discounted Liquor on Binge Drinking

The definition of binge drinking in the USA is the consumption of five or more alcoholic beverages in one sitting by a man, or four or more alcoholic beverages in a sitting by a woman. According to a national survey, one in six adults in the United States binge drink four times a month, and they consume at least eight alcoholic drinks per bingeing session. The ability to stockpile liquor due to attractive deals can lead to an increase in bingeing by making it more affordable and by increasing temptation. If you are concerned that you fall into the category of binge drinker, you may wish to consider detoxing from alcohol in the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas, to cleanse your system of the negative effects of binge drinking, and undergoing any effects of alcohol withdrawal before you gather with your family for the seasonal festivities. And if you are considering detoxing before the holiday period, the availability of Black Friday alcohol deals won’t make it easy! From a financial point of view, binge drinking and other problems associated with excessive drinking cost the United States $223.5 billion in 2006: the equivalent to around 62 cents per alcoholic drink consumed. When all of these statistics are taken into account, it’s easy to understand why certain parties were disappointed by the decision to offer such hugely discounted liquor just before the holiday season.

Will There Be More Black Friday Alcohol Deals?

So the big question is, does the financial success of the ABC stores Black Friday deals in 2012 outweigh the negative effects that cut price alcohol can bring? Does it mean we will see more alcohol and liquor deals on offer for Black Friday in 2013? Laws vary from state to state about whether alcohol is able to be sold at discounted rates: in Ohio, for example, alcohol is never discounted to below a state-mandated minimum amount. Chain supermarkets such as Target and Walmart have offered discounted liquor offers on Black Friday in the past, so we may see them following Virginia’s lead for 2013. Officially the ads for the Black Friday deals aren’t released until Thanks giving week, but previews are unofficially released throughout November: some stores even announce their deals as early as October. Which means we don’t have long to wait to find out if liquor will be on our Black Friday shopping list for 2013!