Dry January

Dry January is a custom of abstaining from alcohol for the month of January, particularly practised in the United Kingdom.

The custom, as a formal entity, appears to be relatively recent, being described as having "sprung up in recent years" even in 2014.[1] Although the Finnish government launched a campaign called "Sober January" already in 1942 as part of its war effort.[2] The term "Dry January" was registered as a trademark by the charity Alcohol Concern in mid-2014;[3] the first ever Dry January campaign by Alcohol Concern occurred in January 2013.[4] In the leadup to the January 2015 campaign, for the first time Alcohol Concern partnered with Public Health England.[5]

In January 2014 according to Alcohol Concern, which initiated the campaign, over 17,000 Britons stopped drinking for that month.[6] While there is controversy as to the efficacy and benefits of the practice, a 2014 survey by the University of Sussex found that six months following January 2014, out of 900 surveyed participants in the custom, 72% had "kept harmful drinking episodes down" and 4% were still not drinking.[7]


  1. "Government unveils first 'Dry January' marketing campaign". Marketingmagazine.co.uk. Retrieved 2 January 2015.
  2. ""Raitis tammikuu" (1942) oli tehokas propagandahyökkäys". http://viestijat.fi. Retrieved 8 January 2015. External link in |publisher= (help)
  3. "Trademark information for DRY JANUARY from CTM - by Markify". Trademark.markify.com. Retrieved 2 January 2015.
  4. "ALL ABOUT DRY JANUARY 2014". Mhealthylifestylemag.com. Retrieved 2 January 2015.
  5. "Festive Drinkers Urged To Try 'Dry January'". LBC. Retrieved 2 January 2015.
  6. "Abstinence after the boozing. Can you make it a dry January?". The Times. Retrieved 2 January 2015.
  7. "BBC News - 'Dry January' linked to drinking less in long term". BBC News. Retrieved 2 January 2015.
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