A new survey has revealed that consumers think the on and off-trade are both to blame for the ongoing problem of binge drinking in the UK. In a survey carried out by him! consultants, 44% blamed supermarkets for the problem, while 36% said pubs were at fault. Tom Fender, director of the him! consultancy said: “The key point is whether the off-trade or on-trade is to blame and consumers say both — slightly more say the off-trade. “Both industries have to recognise it is a social issue. There is no point in pointing the finger at each other.” The data showed that advertising plays a large part in the culture of binge drinking, with 45% of the 1,000 people surveyed saying that it fuels the problem. The survey also revealed that 20% felt the media played a large part in encouraging consumers to drink heavily, but 54% said individuals only have themselves to blame and should take more responsibility themselves. To combat binge drinking, 35% said the price of alcohol should rise, while the same number also felt national or local governments should impose stricter penalties on those that continue to binge drink. Another point to emerge from the him! report was that drinks manufacturers themselves should be more active on the binge-drinking problems that exist in the UK, with 41% saying they should take more responsibility over the issue. “Everyone has to take responsibility, which they probably accept now it has been endorsed by the consumers,” said Fender.