Sale of drinks containing both alcohol and caffeine has been banned by the state Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission.
An emergency regulation barring the marketing of such drinks has been issued by the commission.
The step was taken after safety issues were raised about “Four Loko,” a popular energy drink containing caffeine.
“Public health and public safety are top priorities at the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission,” said Kim Gainsboro, the chairwoman of the board.
An unsafe combination
According to the FDA, any beverage containing both the ingredients could cause risky behaviors and hazardous situations.
The agency stressed on the fact that the combination of both alcohol and caffeine is a disaster and is unsafe for consumption.
Four manufacturers of caffeinated drinks were warned by the FDA on Wednesday, terming caffeine as “an unsafe food additive.”
Some suggest that the ban on Four Loko would not be of much help with the option of buying other caffeine alcoholic drinks like Red Bull.
Wholesalers have now been instructed to remove all the products on their next delivery, at the most by Dec. 3.
“Our members are responsible retailers,” Frank Anzalotti, executive director of the Massachusetts Package Stores Association, said in a statement. “Now that a decision has been made by the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission to ban alcoholic drinks containing caffeine, we have begun the process of notifying our store owners to ensure full compliance with the law.”
Four Loko selling like hot cakes
Post the spread of the impending ban on the drink, Four Loko has been achieving its record highest sale in the past week.
“It’s been crazy ever since,” said Nick Frohne, a cashier at Mall Discount Liquors and Wines in Brookline.
Frohne who had received his last shipment of 12 Four Loko cases yesterday morning had sold them all by 4 p.m.
Some suggest that the ban on Four Loko would not be of much help, with other alcoholic drinks and energy drinks like Red Bull still available.
“They’re not going to ban Red Bull, and they’re not going to ban booze,” Frohne said, adding that the Four Loko ban has caused a general stir among customers.
However, several anxious parents and elders welcomed the ban.
“Because (a) it’s disgusting, (b) it makes people obliterated, and (c) it’s dangerous,” said Melina Parpas, 21, a Boston University senior. “I think it’ll keep kids out of trouble.”