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Washington Bans Alcoholic Energy Drinks, Oregon Unlikely To Follow

Washington state banned alcoholic energy drinks Wednesday. But Oregon’s Liquor Control Commission has no such plans.

Even though a handful of states have now banned the sale of alcoholic energy drinks, it’s not likely that Oregon will follow suit.

The OLCC keeps tight control of hard liquor sales in Oregon. But restricting a drink gets more difficult when it comes to fortified alcohol. 

That’s what’s found in Four Loko — the drink that Washington police believe put nine students in the hospital last month.

Christie Scott with the OLCC said earlier that the agency can’t ban those drinks because they aren’t funneled through the OLCC the way distilled spirits are.

Christie Scott: “This product on the other hand is a malt beverage, which doesn’t come through the OLCC warehouse. And we don’t have any regulatory authority to prevent that from coming into Oregon.”

For now, the only way you’ll stop seeing alcoholic energy drinks on Oregon store shelves is if individual storeowners agree to stop selling the drinks — or distributors stop carrying them.

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