TEXT OF STORY
JEREMY HOBSON: The maker of the popular caffeinated alcohol drink FourLoko says it will be taking the caffeine out of its beverages. Drinks like FourLoko have come under fire after being linked to two deaths and many hospitalizations.
Marketplace’s Stacey Vanek-Smith has more.
STACEY VANEK-SMITH: This Four Loko music video shows a room full of passed out teens. Critics of Four Loko have dubbed the drink “blackout in a can”. Now the maker of Four Loko is removing caffeine from its products just as the Food and Drug Administration is expected to ban drinks that blend alcohol and caffeine. Senator Chuck Schumer said in a press conference that the drinks are dangerous.
CHUCK SCHUMER: Four cans of beer — same amount of alcohol — two cups of coffee — same amount of caffeine. There ought to be big letters across this at the very minimum that say “Be very careful.”
Four Loko generates about $200 million a year in sales and costs around $5 a can. Washington, Michigan, Utah and Oklahoma have already banned Four Loko and other similar drinks.
In New York, I’m Stacey Vanek-Smith for Marketplace.
Marketplace is on a mission.
We believe Main Street matters as much as Wall Street, economic news is made relevant and real through human stories, and a touch of humor helps enliven topics you might typically find…well, dull.
Through the signature style that only Marketplace can deliver, we’re on a mission to raise the economic intelligence of the country—but we don’t do it alone. We count on listeners and readers like you to keep this public service free and accessible to all. Will you become a partner in our mission today?