Young adults, beware stronger beer marketed just for you

According to the New York Times, the alcohol industry is making new efforts to secure the loyalties of the nation’s youngest drinkers. Specifically, MillerCoors and other alcohol manufacturers are making some of their products stronger in order to better appeal to young adults aged 21 to 27.

These newly marketed beers and other alcohols have more alcohol content by volume when compared with similar products. As a result, these products get one buzzed and drunk faster than competitors. While these products may serve their purpose when imbibed knowingly and responsibly, they also may lead otherwise responsible teens and adults to be brought up on charges of drunk driving or underage drinking.

Imagine a scenario in which a new acquaintance hands you a beer at a party. You have had beer before, so you have a pretty good idea of how much beer you can drink and how long you need to sober up before you can drive home safely and legally. But the beer that the new acquaintance gives you is in a glass, not a marked bottle. So you have no way of knowing that this beer is stronger than usual and it will therefore take you longer than usual to sober up before driving home.

In short, make sure to ask hosts at parties what you are drinking, and become well-versed about which beers marketed specifically for Millenials have a higher than average alcohol content. Making these small efforts may mean the difference between an unintentional DUI and arriving home safely and in a law-abiding fashion.

Source: New York Times, “To Draw Millennials, a Stronger Beer Made to Suggest Spirits,” Stuart Elliott, Feb. 18, 2014

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