(Phoenix, Ariz. – Sept. 18, 2008) Attorney General Terry Goddard today announced that he is urging MillerCoors LLC not to put its new alcohol energy drink, Sparks Red, on the market. Goddard has serious concerns about health and safety risks posed by the drink, especially to young people.
On Wednesday, Goddard and 24 other state Attorneys General sent a letter to MillerCoors asking the company to stop the planned launch of Sparks Red. As the letter states, recent studies have shown that mixing alcohol with stimulants, such as caffeine, can reduce drinkers’ perception of intoxication and enable them to feel they can function without impairment. Consumption of alcohol energy drinks also correlates with increased instances of heavy episodic drinking among college students.
In May 2007, Anheuser-Busch stopped production of Spykes, a malt beverage mixed with caffeine, after Goddard and 28 state Attorneys General sent a similar letter to that company.
Goddard, in partnership with the Arizona Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs, Nickelodeon and the Century Council, is launching Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don’t Mix in Arizona on Friday, September 19, at 3 p.m. at the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale Barker Branch, 2311 N. Miller Rd., Scottsdale.
Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don’t Mix, is a multimedia program developed by The Century Council and Nickelodeon that helps facilitate conversations between parents and their children before they are confronted with the opportunity to drink alcohol. It is evident that the conversations are needed and make a difference; 65 percent of adolescents say parents are their leading influence not to drink.
A copy of the letter to MillerCoors is available on the Attorney General’s Web site, www.azag.gov . For more information, contact Anne Hilby at (602) 542-8019.