Executive Summary

From Manteo to Boone, North Carolina Preventing Underage Drinking Initiative (NCPUDi) collaboratives implement environmental management strategies to prevent underage drinking. The following is a report on the state of underage drinking in North Carolina, including NCPUDi results as well as North Carolina and national comparisons.

Underage Drinking & Excessive Alcohol Consumption

  • Approximately 5000 youth die annually from underage drinking. (CDC, 2012)


  • Underage drinking does damage to the developing brain (White, 2003)


  • Underage drinking cost North Carolina $1.5 billion in 2010 (PIRE, 2012)


  • Alcohol is the 2nd leading preventable cause of cancer (WHO, 2008; Schottenfeld et al. 2013)

Project Outcomes

Alcohol Purchase Surveys (APSs):

From July 2009 to June 2013 there has been a 45% reduction in the number of outlets that have failed alcohol purchase surveys.


Talk It Up. Lock It Up!™

Over 5000 signatures have been gathered from adults across North Carolina committing to locking the alcohol in their homes.


Sticker Shock

Beginning in July of 2012, over 5000 flavored alcoholic beverages were stickered in more than 60 stores across North Carolina.


Youth Involvement

Youth involvement is critical to this issue.  Since July of 2009, 22 youth trainings and 7 adult leader trainings have been held, serving 508 youth and 214 adults. Youth empowerment materials have been presented at state and national conferences, including NC SADD Conferences.


Law Enforcement

Through the partnership of community-based organizations, new multi-jurisdictional law enforcement teams have been created to focus on youth access to alcohol and other underage drinking enforcement operations.

Underage Drinking & Excessive Alcohol Consumption

In North Carolina from 1998 to 2011 there has been a:

  • 41% reduction in alcohol use before age 13;
  • 20% reduction in past 30 day use of alcohol; and
  • 23% reduction in binge drinking.


Compared to the Nation, North Carolina ranks:

  • 44th lowest in 12-20 year old past 30 day use;
  • 48th lowest in 12-20 year old binge drinking; and
  • 45th lowest in alcohol related traffic fatalities among 15-20 year olds and 41% lower than the national average.


1Comparison between 1997 and 2011 YRBS

2Data compiled from SAMHSA’s 2012 report to Congress