EU youth drinking less, swapping tobacco for cannabis – EURACTIV.com

Call it COVID-19 or call it the result of legalisation efforts, but more young people are using the green herb than ever before.

Young Europeans are drinking less alcohol and also smoking less – but are increasingly dabbling with cannabis, a continent-wide study showed Thursday.

“Smoking and drinking among 15-16-year-old school students are showing signs of decline, but there are concerns over potentially risky cannabis use and the challenges posed by new addictive behaviour,” according to the European School Survey Project on Alcohol and Other Drugs (ESPAD).

ESPAD interviewed close on 100,000 15- and 16-year-olds across 2019 in 35 countries on teen attitudes towards addictive forms of behaviour in its seventh study since 1995.

At the same time, however, drug use is rising, with 16% of those quizzed admitting to trying cannabis compared with 11% in 1995.

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