Despite what the public wants, and the medical evidence argues…

New MPs dilute alcohol bill backing
NZ Herald 9 May 2012
A proposal to lift the purchase age for alcohol in supermarkets and liquor stores has fallen out of favour due to the new makeup of Parliament, a poll of politicians suggests. The return of New Zealand First and the Green Party’s greater number of MPs have pulled support away from the split purchase age proposed in the Alcohol Reform Bill. Justice Minister Judith Collins has announced that the bill will return to Parliament for its final stages next month.

What the public thinks
Recent Polls on raising drinking age
Herald-Digi Poll (June 2011) Big Majority for raising the drinking age
An overwhelming majority of people support raising the legal purchase age for alcohol to 20 for bars and liquor shops, including supermarkets, according to the latest Herald-DigiPoll survey. …When asked by the pollsters to choose between three options for the minimum age to buy alcohol, 58.6 per cent preferred 20, which was the age before a law change in 1999. Only 14.5 per cent wanted the status quo of 18, while 25.7 per cent wanted a split age.
Online NZ Herald poll showing 72% support for their call to raise the drinking age to 21 – over 10,000 people voting (Feb 2011)
Dominion Post online poll 77% of New Zealanders wanting the legal drinking age put back to at least 20 (2010)
Police Association poll 75% (2009)
Research NZ poll (almost 75% – 2009)
Christchurch Press poll 75% (2009)
ONE News/Colmar Brunton poll 71% (2004