Four Loko: We Won't Use Santa in Our Ads

And, more importantly, won't market on campuses
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 26, 2014 6:40 AM CDT
Updated Mar 26, 2014 8:00 AM CDT
Four Loko: We Won't Market on Campus
Cans of Four Loko are seen on Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012, in Washington.   (AP Photo/Haraz Ghanbari)

Amid controversy over its combination of caffeine and alcohol, the makers of Four Loko announced it was dropping caffeine from the equation in 2010. But authorities weren't finished with Phusion Projects: Now, the company has agreed to a raft of new marketing rules, the Los Angeles Times reports. The settlement comes after 20 states and San Francisco held that Phusion marketed alcohol to under-21s and hadn't made clear the risks of mixing caffeine and booze, the Washington Post reports.

Among the new restrictions: Phusion won't promote its drinks on college campuses, and the "names, initials, logos, or mascots" of colleges and student groups won't appear in marketing, the Consumerist reports. The company won't encourage mixing Four Loko with caffeine. People appearing in Four Loko marketing must be at least 25 and "reasonably appear to be over 21 years of age." And St. Nick is out: The company won't use "descriptions or depictions of Santa Claus" in ads, the Post notes. Phusion is also paying $400,000 to help cover the costs of the case and support the fight against underage drinking. In a statement, the company says:

  • While our company did not violate any laws and we disagree with the allegations of the State Attorneys General, we consider this agreement a practical way to move forward and an opportunity to highlight our continued commitment to ensuring that our products are consumed safely and responsibly only by adults 21 and over.
(More Four Loko stories.)

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