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Powdered Alcohol's Approval Rescinded by TTB

By Jenny Tsay, Esq. on April 22, 2014 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Looks like the party's over before it even began. The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau has rescinded its label approvals for Palcohol, a powdered alcohol product.

The TTB stated that the label approvals were somehow issued in error. Apparently, the labels were unclear as to how much powder was in a bag of Palcohol, according to The Associated Press.

At this time, Palcohol has the option of revising and resubmitting its labels, but it should also consider potential legal issues.

Approval Granted... Then Rescinded

The TTB is the government agency that's responsible for approving new types of alcohol and is part of the Treasury Department.

The TTB is responsible for enforcing the provisions of the Federal Alcohol Administration Act, making sure that only qualified persons or companies operate in the adult beverage industry. According to the TTB's website, the agency is responsible for enforcing laws regulating:

  • Businesses engaged in alcohol production, importation, and wholesale;
  • Business engaged in tobacco manufacturing and importing; and
  • Alcohol labeling and advertising.

But many are scratching their heads over the TTB's backtracking on Palcohol's approval. One beverage law attorney told the AP that an error of this nature on the TTB's part seems unlikely. Lehrman suggests the government agency may have heard back from lawmakers who wanted more information on powdered alcohol products.

While being able to use Palcohol to sneak liquor into a concert may seem like a brilliant idea, there are some legal issues the company may face in the future. One of them could be defects in warning about the dangers or uses of the product.

Manufacturers are responsible for warning users about hidden dangers that may be present in the product and providing instructions for how to use the product safely.

For Palcohol, there are many concerns. For example, the powdered alcohol form could potentially lead curious consumers to snort it, which could result in injury. Although the Palcohol website warns users against snorting it, that warning should also be clearly stated on the label.

Palcohol's creators will be able to resubmit the product's labels for approval to the TTB, so there's still a chance that powdered alcohol will hit shelves sometime in the future.

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