AGs Question Marketing of Alcoholic Energy Drinks

Attorney Generals from 30 states are urging the federal government to crack down on manufacturers that market caffeine-laced alcoholic beverages to underage consumers. The top state legal officers called on the Federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau to better regulate the hybrid drinks. In some cases, manufacturers are making claims that they are less intoxicating than beer, which is misleading, they say.

The beverages -- with names such as Bud Extra, Sparks, Tilt and Rockstar 21 -- have as much or more alcohol than beer and malt beverages. They also contain stimulants, such as caffeine, guarana and taurine. Some are sold in containers that resemble popular nonalcoholic energy drinks, such as Red Bull and Rockstar.

Art Resnick, spokesman for the Federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, said the agency was reviewing the request and that the agency will punish manufacturers that claim stimulants make alcoholic beverages less dangerous.

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