Ice cream to lick hangover in S. Korea
SOUTH Koreans, Asia's biggest per capita alcohol drinkers, can now soothe themselves with hangover-fighting ice cream.
A convenience store chain has launched the Gyeondyo-bar, which translates to "hang in there". The company said it is the first ice cream bar marketed specifically to combat the after-effects of alcohol consumption.
Drinking, often among groups of co-workers, is big business in South Korea, and so are hangover cures.
They generate roughly 150 billion won (S$174 million) in annual sales, from pills to cosmetics for women who want to keep skin soft after a boozy night.
Those cures exclude the "hangover soup" - a staple of Korean restaurant menus.
South Korea is exporting its remedies. Its most popular hang-over beverage, Hut-gae Condition, made by a unit of the CJ conglomerate, has been sold in China, Japan, and Vietnam since 2014.
The drink also features in 2014 music video Hangover by Korean pop star Psy and United States rapper Snoop Dogg.
South Koreans drink 12.3 litres of alcohol on average a year, according to a 2014 World Health Organization report.
A study by South Korea's National Health Insurance Policy Institute estimated that the social cost of drinking, including to lost production, hospitalisation and early deaths, was about 9.45 trillion won in 2013.