The University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital’s National Poll on Children’s Health surveyed 1,982 adults in May 2015 across U.S. states on powdered alcohol.
Powdered alcohol was only recently approved for U.S. sale by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB), but has already been banned in Louisiana, South Carolina and Vermont,
The powdered alcohol packets come in flavors of distilled spirits such as rum and vodka and are mixed with 200 ml of water for instant cocktails.
Palcohol brand owner Lipsmark says powdered alcohol is intended as a convenience product for adults taking long hikes, but some consumers are worried the concept entices younger consumers.
Poll supports federal ban
Sixty per cent of those polled supported an outright ban on powdered alcohol in their state, while 84% favored prohibiting online sales of the product. Eighty-five per cent also backed placing restrictions on powdered alcohol marketing on social networks.
“In the U.S., parents, communities, and healthcare providers already face serious challenges with underage alcohol abuse and its harmful effects on children’s health. This poll indicates common concern among our communities over potential abuse and misuse of powdered alcohol as well as the product’s potential to exacerbate the problem of underage drinking,” says. Matthew M. Davis, M.D., M.A.P.P., director of the National Poll on Children’s Health and professor of pediatrics and internal medicine in the Child Health Evaluation and Research Unit at the U-M Medical School.
State Senator Rick Jones has proposed a ban in Michigan that passed the Senate unanimously and is now being considered by the Committee on Regulatory Reform.
Palcohol maker fights back
Lipsmark hopes to launch its powdered alcohol brand Palcohol this summer and worries state bans and a possible federal ban will prevent responsible adults from enjoying the product.
“Even though all of these individuals and businesses want Palcohol, the legislators are telling them they can’t have a legal product, basically saying they know what’s better than the people themselves. Whether you are conservative or liberal, no one wants a nanny government telling its citizens what they can and cannot drink,” it writes on its website.
It adds that powdered alcohol is four times the price of liquid alcohol, which limits its appeal among kids.
“…Why isn’t a move made to ban liquid alcohol also…..a product abused by millions of people causing the death of tens of thousands of people each year. Liquid alcohol is a bigger threat to public health than Palcohol will ever be,” it says.