Powdered Alcohol Approved For Sale In The U.S.
A powdered alcohol product called Palcohol was recently approved by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB), making it the first powdered booze to hit the U.S.
Palcohol, a powdered substance that can be mixed with water or other liquids to make liquid alcohol, was approved by the TTB last year, according to Motherboard, but apparently that was a mistake; the product’s approval was rescinded almost immediately due to labeling issues.
Now, however, the labeling issues have been sorted out. Since alcohol is legal, reports Motherboard, there was no other reason for TTB to deny approval to Palcohol. Drinkers will soon be able to legally purchase the freeze-dried alcohol in their choice of four flavors.
Many states are taking a stand against powdered alcohol, however, despite the fact that it’s technically not even for sale yet. The National Conference of State Legislatures reports that Alaska, Delaware, Michigan, Louisiana, South Carolina and Vermont have already banned the substance, while four other states are considering it.
Palcohol creator Mark Phillips takes offense at the banning of his product, saying there is “not one shred of evidence that it will be used or abused any differently than liquid alcohol” since it isn’t even on the market yet. Addressing fears that people will snort Palcohol, Phillips writes, “Even the goofballs won't snort Palcohol due to the pain the alcohol would cause. It really burns. Imagine sniffing liquid vodka. Second, it’s impractical. It takes approximately 60 minutes to snort the equivalent of one shot of vodka. Why would anyone do that when they can do a shot of liquid vodka in two seconds?”
Phillips goes on to explain that Palcohol will be sold just like liquid alcohol, so there’s no reason it should be any easier for underage drinkers to get their hands on. In addition, a packet of Palcohol will measure 4 by 6 inches, making it difficult to sneak into venues or out of liquor stores.
As for accusations that Palcohol will make it easier to spike drinks, Phillips claims that the powdered alcohol doesn’t dissolve instantly in liquid and that it would take over a minute of stirring to dissolve the equivalent of one shot into a drink.
So what exactly is Palcohol intended for, if not underage drinking? According to the company’s website, it has a variety of uses, including hiking, backpacking, the travel industry — using lightweight powdered alcohol instead of heavier bottles of liquids on airplanes, for example — and even the medical industry, which could benefit from a lightweight, more portable antiseptic in remote locations. (Presumably the medical version of Palcohol would not be flavored.)
According to the company, Palcohol could be available as early as this summer — unless you live in a state that has already banned it.