(yeah, I first typed Pittsburgh Liquor Control Board... Freudian slip? yeah, we need that)
So I took their data by county and just matched it to population to come up with a ranking of sales from the state stores per capita for all Pennsylvania counties and the following is what I begin to come up with. Where is that old City Paper Go Figure column when you need it?
Total Pennsylvania State Store Sales Per Capita by County, 2010-2011 Retail Year
Top 5, Bottom 5 + Pennsylvania and Philadelphia
So no.. we are certainly not the biggest drinkers at least in dollar terms. I honestly do not know if state store prices are completely consistent across the commonwealth which would impact what these dollar values mean to actual consumption. Beyond that what's it mean? Certainly some income effects on top end with the higher income counties spending more per person. On the low end it is more than income and certainly does not explain why Juniata denizens are such teetotalers. One issue may be sheer access and Juniata has only a single state store in the entire county. Probably has something to do with the low sales. Is a paper for someone to write and create a more complete model of what predicts state store sales in Pennsylvania. I would include income, demographics, distance from a state border crossed with access to major interstate, and density of stores. Throw in some spatial autoregression and we're there! Someone must have done that somewhere.
Anyway.. as Brian began to, you could spend all day obsessing on those stats. Not a bad compilation of data from the state in that report, but it would be nice if they made it available in some other form than just the PDF documents. So...... I have put the data I transcribed out of the report and the matched population data into this file.
I will point out that if you dig into their data... there is a truly astronomical amount of Sake being purchased per capita in Montour County, Pennsylvania... for reasons that are not apparent to me. So if there was not some big Japanese Wedding there last year I almost wonder if someone added a zero (or two) by accident in some data stream. It is that far from the norm. Works out to an average of $2.69 of Sake per person per year compared to the statewide average of a single penny.