Source: Clifford Coonan Beijing, Irish Times
A chain of South Korean convenience shops is offering cold comfort to those recovering from over-indulgence in alcohol with the introduction of an ice-cream bar that claims to cure hangovers. It’s called the Gyeondyo-bar, which translates as “hang in there”.
The ice cream contains 0.7 per cent oriental raisin tree fruit juice, which is a common hangover cure in Korea, and the name “expresses the hardships of employees who have to suffer a working day after heavy drinking, as well as to provide comfort to those who have to come to work early after frequent nights of drinking”, ran a press release from the WithMe chain of shops, part of the giant Shinsegae Group.
The Koreans are often called the Irish of Asia for their drinking, although they prefer to think of the Irish as the Koreans of Europe.
In 2015, South Korea was neck-and-neck with Ireland in the alcohol consumption stakes, according to World Health Organisation data, with an average of 10.9 litres per capita per annum.
In 2010, South Koreans drank significantly more than the Irish, with 12.3 litres per capita versus 11.9 litres in Ireland.
As well as working hard, Koreans play hard – they work the second most hours per annum in the world after Mexico.
The social effects of this behaviour are intense. The Reuters news agency quoted a study by South Korea’s National Health Insurance Policy Institute, which estimated that the social cost of drinking, including to lost production, hospitalisations and early deaths, was about 9.45 trillion won (€709 billion) in 2013.
BevX Reaction – If the ice cream doesn’t do the trick check out our guide to surviving a hangover.