Caffeinated Alcoholic Drinks Banned In Mass.

By Jess Bidgood

Nov. 18, 2010

No more Four Loko for Massachusetts.  

An empty can of Four Loko is seen in a recycling bin outside of Harvard University. (Jess Bidgood/WGBH)

That's the result of emergency regulations filed Thursday afternoon by the state's Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission (ABCC), which ban the sale of alcoholic beverages containing added caffeine. Under the new rules, all such beverages must be removed from stores immediately.

"Beginning today,all retailer and other businesses licensed by the ABCC are prohibited from selling, storing, importing or transporting these products in Massachusetts," said Kim Gainsboro, Chairman of the ABCC.

Four Loko has been at the center of increasing public scrutiny amidst reports the fast-acting drink was leading to the hospitalization -- and, in some cases, death -- of individuals who drank too much of it.

The regulations follow a ruling Wednesday by the Food and Drug Administration stating that alcoholic beverages containing added caffeine are a public health risk.


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