“Alcopops” are flavored alcoholic drinks that contain juices and other flavors. Even if you haven’t heard the term before, you might recognize some alcopops by name. For example, Mike’s Hard Lemonade, Sparks, Tilt, Blast, Four Loko, Smirnoff Ice and Bacardi Breezer are all considered alcopops. Here’s what you need to know about these products:
Alcopops contain more alcohol than the average can of beer. While the average can of beer contains a little more than 3% alcohol content, alcopops typically contain 4-5%. What’s more is that supersized alcopops have been known to contain as much as 12% alcohol content. This means approximately 4.7 servings of alcohol can be consumed from one can!
Alcopops are attractive to underage youth, especially girls. If the alcopop industry intentionally targets underage youth, we haven’t been able to prove it. However, we do know that the sweet taste and soft drink-like packaging of alcopops appeals to underage girls. In fact, the American Medical Association found that underage girls drink more alcopops than any other alcohol beverage.
Those who drink alcopops are more likely to binge drink. Binge drinking is defined as consuming 5+ drinks for men or 4+ drinks for women in one sitting. That’s just one supersized alcopop! Plus, alcopops’ sweet flavor masks the taste of alcohol. They “go down easy,” and people may not be aware of how much alcohol they are consuming.
For more on alcopops, see:
- Alcopops and Girls: Fact Sheet, American Medical Association
- Alcopops FAQ, Alcohol Justice – The Industry Watchdog
- Alco-Pops: A Refreshment to Rethink, National Institute on Drug Abuse
- National Poll Shows “Alcopop” Drinks Lure Teens, Center for Science in the Public Interest
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