As we move from edible marijuana to powdered alcohol, one thing is clear: Americans are finding creative ways to catch a buzz these days.
However, there are those that feel products like these are making it to easy for minors to have access to these illegal substances.
U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., is one such person and has announced that he will introduce legislation to ban the sale of powdered alcohol, dubbed "Palcohol," claiming the Federal Drug Administration is refusing to investigate the new product's health risks.
"Powdered alcohol is a disturbing concept and will only make it easier for minors on Staten Island to access, conceal and abuse alcohol," Schumer explained in a press release. "Palcohol can be easily concealed and brought into concerts, school dances and sporting events, it can be sprinkled on food and can even be snorted. Given that the federal TTB can only judge and approve new alcohol products based on labeling and taxation, it's clear the FDA must utilize their authority to intervene when alcohol products create significant health risks -- as they did with Four Loko -- and stop this potentially deadly product in its tracks."
Palcohol is manufactured by company called Lipsmark LLC, and is essentially freeze-dried alcohol reproduced in a powder form. The company website advertises six different types of Palcohol packets including cosmopolitan, Puerto Rican rum, vodka, a powdered margarita, mojito, and lemon drop. The site explains that the vodka and rum packets can be combined with water or another liquid to instantly create an alcoholic beverage. The website also explains that users can add the various Palcohol packets to foods like guacamole, salads and sauces.
"With powdered alcohol on its way to store shelves by this fall, we're sitting on a powder keg. Clearly our food and drug safety experts must step in before this mind-boggling product, surely to become the Kool-Aid of teen binge drinking, sees the light of day," Schumer added.
The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau regulates the alcohol industry as it relates to taxation and labeling, and the group recently approved Palcohol's labels but quickly rescinded those approvals the same day due amount of powder in each packet. Lipsmark then reduced the amount of powder and resubmitted the product to the TTB, which is where it currently sits and where Schumer is hoping it permanently sits.