Powdered Alcohol Has US Senator 'in Total Disbelief'

... as inventor Mark Phillips decries 'nanny state'
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2015 1:50 PM CDT
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(Newser) – People may well love Palcohol, and that's exactly what some lawmakers are worried about. Introduced in 2012 and approved for sale by the feds last month, the powdered-alcohol product is running into strong opposition despite pleas from its inventor, the New York Times reports. Six states have already banned it, and New York Sen. Charles Schumer has introduced federal legislation along the same lines. "I am in total disbelief that our federal government has approved such an obviously dangerous product," Forbes quotes him as saying. "Underage alcohol abuse is a growing epidemic with tragic consequences and powdered alcohol could exacerbate this." A New York doctor notes that it could also fall into the hands of alcoholics or be added to other drugs, like heroin, WebMD reports.

Palcohol's website didn't help matters by initially saying the powder could be snorted, sprinkled on guacamole, or smuggled into stadiums and theaters. Those suggestions have since been pulled, and Palcohol inventor Mark Phillips is asking potential buyers to act responsibly. Snorting, for example, "would take you an hour of pain to ingest the equivalent of one drink," he says. "It really burns." If it hits the shelves, Palcohol will come in five flavors (Cosmopolitan, Lemon Drop, rum, vodka, and margarita) and sell in four-inch-by-six-inch packages that Phillips says are hard to conceal. When mixed with six ounces of liquid, it makes a drink with 10% alcohol—like a glass of wine. "Listen, people can snort black pepper ... so do we ban it?" says Phillips. "No, just because a few goofballs use a product irresponsibly doesn’t mean you ban it."

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