Not many states in the United States support the idea of serving powdered alcohol. According to the Alcohol Justice, a non-profit advocacy, research and policy organization, 31 U.S. states have laws banning powdered alcohol. Despite all the concerns, both the House and Senate in Texas are considering a bill to regulate the sale of powdered alcohol in Texas.
If the bill is passed, Texas will be the second state after Colorado to regulate the sale of powdered alcohol. A similar legislation is under consideration in Wisconsin.
The product is manufactured under the name Palcohol and it has remained a topic of controversy since its introduction in the market in 2014. According to critics, the product in the powder form might give rise to underage drinking. Prior to the ban, it had received approval for sale from the U.S. Alcohol & Tobacco Tax & Trade Bureau (TTB) in March 2015, though the product never found its way to the shelves.
Federal agencies support the ban of Palcohol considering the dangerous effects of alcohol. As per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), alcohol is responsible for about 88,000 deaths in the U.S. every year.
Moreover, the fact that alcohol in powdered form can be snorted to get the desired intoxicating effect makes it a dangerous substance of abuse for kids. One can carry Palcohol in little packets, thus, making it easy for them to hide and circulate the packets and also making it difficult for guardians to detect its presence. In addition, no regulation restricts the use of powdered alcohol by certain age groups.
Reiterating on the nature and extent of mess Palcohol use can cause, State Representative Ryan Guillen D-Rio Grande City said, “I am worried about minors having access to this product, and current law leaves this as a possibility. We can’t let that stand.”
Elaborating on the ill effects of Palcohol, Nicole Holt, CEO of Texans Standing Tall said, “The fact that you can eat it or snort it is dangerous. Our concern is that you then take a product that is already dangerous and you make it even easier for kids to consume at larger quantities and a larger rate.”
Guillen added that he had filed House Bill 47 that calls for modification of the definition of an alcoholic beverage to include powdered alcohol, restrict against possession and purchase of the product by minors and impose necessary taxation and regulations on Palcohol just like liquor.
Though most people are in favor of complete prohibition of the product due to safety reasons, the biggest question that follows is whether the laws prohibiting any kind of substance use will have any desired effect. In spite of a number of laws in place controlling the use of most illegal drugs, people continue to misuse and abuse most of them that is responsible for thousands of deaths every year in the U.S. Experts say that regulation and taxation for substances are important as they will keep a check on the purchase and sales as against legal prohibition.
Dependence on alcohol can have devastating effects irrespective of the age group of the user. Palcohol, if taken in excess, can lend the same nature of addictive impact as traditional liquor. The Sovereign Health of Texas examines its patients for signs of alcohol abuse before recommending the necessary interventions – pharmacological or behavioral. For more information about residential addiction treatment centers in the U.S., call us at our 24/7 helpline number 866-399-5740 or chat online for expert advice about Texas addiction treatment centers.
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