Japan encourages youth to consume more alcohol to strengthen the economy

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Japan encourages youth to consume more alcohol to strengthen the economy

The National Tax Agency of Japan’s “Sake Viva!” campaign, which urged youth to consume more alcohol, was received with vehement opposition from the Japanese people. Social media users in Japan criticised the government organisation for imposing rules on people’s lifestyle choices.

The initiative, which was started in July and is an idea competition, is looking for suggestions from businesses and young people to help revitalise Japan’s liquor industry. After being covered by news organisations both inside and outside of Japan, the campaign gained steam on Twitter this week and was immediately received with harsh condemnation from the Japanese populace.

Japanese brewers claim they are unable to reverse the country’s declining alcohol sales because of health-conscious consumers, an ageing population, and a variety of consumer tastes.

The competition seeks 20 to 39-year-olds to submit their business concepts to spark interest in Japanese sake, shochu, whisky, beer, or wine among their peers.

Alcohol sales have decreased, according to the organisation organising the competition for the tax authorities, as a result of new habits that were partly created during the Covid epidemic and an aging population. It encourages participants to develop innovative concepts incorporating artificial intelligence for promotions, branding, and other aspects of business.

According to Japanese media, there has been a range of responses, including some criticism of the effort to promote a bad habit. However, other people have shared odd ideas online, such as having well-known actresses “perform” as hosts of virtual reality clubs. Over time, taxes on alcohol have likewise decreased in revenue. The Japan Times reports that it represented 5% of overall income in 1980 but only 1.7% in 2020.

Japan has the largest percentage of people over 65 in the world, according to the World Bank, with close to a third (29%) of the country’s population.

Not only are questions about the future a concern for Japan’s economy; there are also concerns about the availability of younger workers for particular occupations and the care of the elderly in the future.

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