IN NUMBERS: How life in Germany has changed over the past 10 years

IN NUMBERS: How life in Germany has changed over the past 10 years
A lot has changed in Germany in the past six months, let alone the past 10 years. We take a look in figures at the difference a decade has made.

At the moment, the corona crisis determines almost everything. Looking back to 10 years ago almost feels like travelling to another world. 

When it comes to everyday life in Germany, some figures show a rapid change – for instance in drinking, eating and smoking habits and in media consumption. 

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Here are the biggest change that the past decade has brought.

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Mobile phones: Currently, 76 percent of German citizens above the age of 16 use a mobile phone with access to the internet. That corresponds to 53 million people, according to the IT industry association Bitkom.

In 2015, the figures stood at 65 percent and in 2012 only 36 percent. The triumph of smartphones, however, only began in 2007 with the introduction of the Apple iPhone. 

Beer: Ten years ago, the per capita consumption of beer was around 107 litres, according to the German Brewers Association. In 2019, Germany is only said to have drunk around 102 litres.

And 1976 is said to have been a record year in West Germany with a per capita consumption of 151 litres. The market share of non-alcoholic beer rose from around three percent ten years ago to seven percent in 2020.

Varieties of alcohol-free beers. Photo: DPA

Drinks: In 2019, Germany consumed almost 124 litres of non-alcoholic soft drinks per capita, according to the German Association of Non-Alcoholic Drinks (wafg) in Berlin.

Within the category, the shift towards reduced-calorie and calorie-free drinks such as Diet Coke continued. In 2010, 118 litres of drinks such as cola and lemonades, fruit juice drinks and spritzers, sodas, tea and energy drinks were consumed.

READ ALSO: The 20 key stats that help explain Germany today

Meat: Around eight million people in Germany are vegetarian and around 1.3 million are vegan, according to the ProVeg interest group. According to estimates, there are around 200 new vegetarians and 200 new vegans every day. In 2011, the then still called Vegetarian Union (VEBU) estimated there to be six million vegetarians and around 60,000 vegans.

Media: The daily consumption of moving images by people aged 14 and over was 5 hours and 10 minutes in 2019, according to the VAUNET media usage analysis.

According to the Arbeitsgemeinschaft (AGF) Video Research, the daily television viewing time in 2019 was 211 minutes, whereas in 2010 it was 223 minutes.

Depending on the age, time spent in front of the television in 2019 was very different: adults over 50 watched more than five hours per day, whilst those between the ages of 14-29 watched less than an hour and a half. The corona crisis inspired a comeback of real-time television.

Lockdown saw more Germans reaching for the remote. Photo: DPA

Smoking: According to various studies to which, among other things, the current addiction report by the federal government refers, the proportion of young people up to the age of 15 who smoke has fallen by two thirds in the past ten years.

READ ALSO: Opinion: Why Germany needs to take the smoking ban more seriously

In adults, the proportion of smokers has fallen from around 40 to around 25 percent of men, and from around 30 to 20 percent of women since 2003. A comparison of federal states still shows that more people smoke in the north and in large cities.

Translation by Stephanie Nourse


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