This calls for a contest!

The National Tax Agency (NTA) has a problem with the youth of today: They simply aren’t drinking enough alcohol anymore. According to an independent study, roughly half of young adults in Japan do not — I repeat NOT — even have a daily drinking habit.

That’s a problem the NTA is looking to rectify. But how do you turn younger people on to the mind-altering effects of booze? This is a question that has puzzled humanity for ages, and despite our best attempts such as Spuds McKenzie and the Zima guy, the youth have long simply shrugged and called liquor “squaresville, daddy-o” to use their parlance.

▼ What more could we do?!

Some people might consider this a good thing in that it results in healthier and more productive people less likely to yell at me on a train station platform for no reason. But these are all matters handled by other government agencies. The NTA is all about getting those taxes, of which alcoholic product sales are a rich source.

However, “Drink more, so we can get your money!” is not a great promotional slogan, so the NTA has opened up marketing ideas to the general public in their Sake Viva! contest. Until 9 September anyone between the ages of 20 and 39 can participate alone or in groups of two or three to come up with new sales strategies that would appeal to young adults. Anything is open for consideration, but the NTA mentioned that they’re expecting an emphasis on home drinking and utilizing the metaverse for sales among the ideas.

▼ Someone needs to take all the fun and enchantment of going to a liquor store and digitize it for the new economy

Finalists will move on to the next round on 10 November and the most highly evaluated idea will be implemented by the NTA in the near future. It’s a great opportunity for an aspiring marketing specialist, but readers of the news remain largely skeptical about the safety of alcohol and motives of the NTA.

“They’re probably also losing tax revenue from the drop in cigarette sales. Maybe they should just raise taxes on alcohol too.”
“How many crimes are the result of alcohol?”
“No one can afford to drink. Work on that first.”
“This is stupid.”
“Are they trying to make alcoholics? Just let the old people drink up and then pay in full for the diseases they give themselves as a result.”
“Not drinking is a good thing. What are they talking about?”
“If they want us to drink, give people more free time and spendable income. It’s pretty easy.”
“There are no benefits to drinking, but lots of harm.”
“I’m drunk right now, and I still think its a good think that less people are drinking.”
“Beer is just bitter water and company drinking parties are a waste of time and money.”

It certainly looks like contestants will have their work cut out for them trying to find ways to sell booze to this group of teetotalers. It seems that younger people today just can’t be bothered to ingest something that makes you feel really good for a few hours, then really terrible for the next day or so.

I do love a challenge though, and after googling “What do young adults like” Nielson Norman Group informed me that younger people like to keep lots of browser tabs open at the same time. So, how about a beer mug with a Bluetooth interface on the handle that allows for fast and smooth switching between browser tabs as well as other functions useful for surfing the world wide web, like downloading bitmap and midi files? It would have to have an alcohol content detector built-in too so young people don’t cheat and put wheatgrass tea or something else in the mug.

See you all in November!

Source:, Hachima Kiko, Nielson Norman Group
Top image: Pakutaso
Insert image: Pakutaso
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