Sen. Charles Schumer Urges FDA to Ban Powdered Booze

Sen. Charles Schumer Urges FDA to Ban Powdered Booze

By Bryan Le 05/05/14

The controversial new product, Palcohol, has raised the hackles of the New York senator, who believes that it can be deadly and will be abused by teens.

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New York Senator Charles Schumer (D) is pushing the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to ban Palcohol, a powdered alcohol product that he believes could become "the Kool-Aid of teenage binge drinking." Schumer fears the product is too easily concealed and abused - teenagers could bring it into concerts or dances and consume dangerous levels of Palcohol without even knowing it.

“It can be sprinkled on food and even snorted..." he said. "What’s to stop a bad individual from sprinkling powdered alcohol into someone’s lunch or dinner when they’re not looking? This can be really dangerous.”

Lipsmark LLC, Palcohol's parent company, dismissed the claims, saying that Palcohol would be too painful to snort and that the product would be sold with the same restrictions as liquid alcohol. But the company does endorse sprinkling Palcohol on food, suggesting its kamikaze powder could be mixed into guacamole while its cosmopolitan mix would go well sprinkled on a salad.

Palcohol was very nearly approved by the federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, but the decision was reversed. The FDA, however, can ban a product that it deems unsafe even if it has been approved by the Bureau.

The senator is confident the FDA will take his side. “If they found Four Loko to be unsafe, they are clearly going to find Palcohol because it’s much more dangerous,” Schumer said.