Four Loko to remain on shelves for limited time

Kristyn Soltis

Popular alcoholic drink will be pulled off shelves December 13th.

Phusion Projects, the makers of Four Loko, a popular alcoholic drink made from a mixture of alcohol, caffeine, guarana and taurine, has agreed to cease production and stop distributing the caffeinated alcoholic beverages in Ohio.

This is leading some students to stock up on the controversial 23.5 ounce “blackout in a can” before it’s removed from store shelves Dec. 13.

The state Division of Liquor Control warned it would pursue changes in Ohio law if the alcoholic energy drink makers did not take action on their own to prevent sales of the product in the state.

One can of Four Loko is the equivalent of three beers, one cup of coffee and one Red Bull energy drink, according to

Other states have already taken action against the drink, placing bans on further distribution of the product in places such as New York, Michigan and Utah.

Phusion Products advised the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that it expects to have its products off retail store shelves by Dec. 13, although some Kent stores have already removed the beverage.

“We don’t have anymore,” said Mike Juarovisech, manager of Circle K on Main Street. “We removed them last week when the makers stopped distributing them.”

But 101 Bottles on North Willow Street still has the product for sale. Cases of 12 Four Loko cans are available for under $40.

Jared Jakes, a senior marketing major, doesn’t think the ban is necessary.

“I think that if cigarettes are legal, why can’t Four Lokos be legal?” he said. “People should be responsible for their own actions.”

But junior accounting major Pat Lang said he thinks the ban may be a good thing for people’s health.

“I think it’s for the better but I’m sad to see it go,” Lang said. “I know it’s dangerous with the combination with caffeine and alcohol. It’s not healthy.”

The federal government has called caffeine in the drinks an “unsafe food additive.” Experts say the combination of alcohol and caffeine makes it difficult to monitor how intoxicated someone becomes.

“I don’t really encourage it or anything, but I seem to have the best times when I go out and have a Four Loko before,” Lang said. “But I know it’s not good for your health. I don’t usually like alcohol and caffeine anyway. I will just go back to drinking beer.”

You can contact Kristyn Soltis at [email protected].