Which States Drink the Most Beer?

Here in the US, we like our beer. We like it cold on a hot summer’s day and we like it on Sundays during football games. We drink when we’re tailgating, at a concert, or chilling on the beach.

In 2013, the US had 213,029 barrels of beer shipped in for consumption by its hop loving citizens. That’s 6.6 billion gallons of beer, and that’s just the imports. That number doesn’t include the domestic beer and all the micro-breweries we’re all so fond of.

That’s a whole lot of beer.

According to the Beer Market Insights, the average legal drinking aged adult drinks 27.7 gallons of beer in 2013. That number converts to 3,545.6 ounces, or roughly 295.5 cans of beer a year. But some of us drink way more than others.

Can you guess which states are the top five in the country? New York? Texas? Alaska?

The Top 5 Beer Drinking States

  1. North Dakota. North Dakota ranked first for the most beer consumed per capita with 43.6 gallons. It may not surprise you to know it also has the highest death rate for alcohol related car crashes.
  2. New Hampshire. New Hampshire ranked first for a few years, but dropped to second place with 42.2 gallons per year. But if you add in spirits and wine, this state’s back at the top again for total alcohol consumption. It’s also interesting that New Hampshire has the lowest poverty level in the county… Hmm? Is there a correlation there?
  3. Montana. Montana ranks third as far as beer drinking, averaging 40.5 gallons. It also holds the record for the highest percentage (3.4 percent) of people who admit to drinking and driving excessively. Now, that’s something you can be proud of.
  4. South Dakota. Not wanting to be out-shined by it’s next door neighbor, South Dakota comes in fourth on our list at 38.2 gallons. Is there anything to do in these two states besides drink beer?
  5. Vermont. Vermont is fifth in most beer consumed at 35.9 gallons, but had the highest increase in beer drinking in the last ten years, increasing by 16.4 gallons.

So you may be wondering what these five states have in common. Can you guess it?

Nobody lives there! All the states at the top of the list have low population densities. Perhaps residents drink so much because they don’t have anywhere to go. I mean what are you really going to be doing in the middle of winter in North Dakota?

Or Maybe They Like to Binge Drink

According to the CDC, binge drinking occurs anytime a woman drinks four or more drinks, or a man drinks five or more, in two hours. The Beer Marketers Insights says what the top states have in common is a large amount of binge drinkers. It’s also assumed these states have more heavy drinkers, defined as one or more drinks a day for women, and two or more for men.

Who’s to say really? All I know is I’m ready for a beer!


Do you like beer? Do you drink your allotted 295.5 cans a year? Tell us what you think in the comments. We want to know!




Molly Carter
Molly Carter
Molly is a freelance writer who talks about everything and anything from addiction, to sex. to skinning a deer. You can find her at MollyCarterWriter.com, or Facebook.