Document Type : Review Article


Central Headquarter of Drug and Poison Information Center, Food and Drug Organization, Tehran, Iran


Alcohol in Iran is produced mainly from molasses of sugar cane and sugar beet. Other sources of alcohol production like wheat and barley exist, but because of some cultural and political reasons, they cannot be legally used for producing alcohol in Iran.
Twenty-six manufacturers in 18 provinces are officially active. The actual capacity of ethanol production with medical purity is about 100million liters, but the real volume of production is about 40 million liters. 10 million liters of ethanol production is exported. Obviously, the importance of export multiplies after increase of price ratio between Dollar and Rial. Thirty million liters use internally as bulk in various industries provided in 1, 2 and 5 liter packages in hygienic and medical centers and also medical laboratories.
1 and 2 liter packages are made from glass with amber color and 5 liter packages are made from plastic. The bright glass packages with smaller volume, are sold in market, actually are out of control products and obviously illegal. Also there is no available data on extra volume of alcohol production, although the sources of out of control alcohol are definitely the other kind of material except molasses. Since marketing of alcoholic beverages is prohibited in Iran, there are no exact statistics of the amount of alcoholic drinks used in this country. Also there is no official import of medical alcohol in Iran.
It is concluded that there is no available data for real volume of out of control alcohol and alcoholic beverages in Iran, so no one can predict prevalence of ethanol and methanol poisoning in Iran.