Food and Drink

FourLoko makers plan to remove caffeine

Marketplace Staff Nov 17, 2010
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Food and Drink

FourLoko makers plan to remove caffeine

Marketplace Staff Nov 17, 2010
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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.

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