Okay, this leads to some interesting questions.
AMSTERDAM, Netherlands (Reuters) — Dutch students have invented powdered alcohol which they say can be sold legally to minors.
The latest innovation in inebriation, called Booz2Go, is available in 20-gram packets that cost €1–1.5 ($1.35-$2).
Top it up with water and you have a bubbly, lime-colored and –flavored drink with just 3 percent alcohol content.
Possibly this could be sold to people under 16 in the Netherlands — but we can be proximally certain it wouldn’t fly in the states. For one thing, I don’t think the laws barring sale to alcohol to minors specify that it has to be liquid; and besides, adults in the US seem to prefer their teens begging for pleasure rather than having control over their own chemically-altered destinies.*
Apparently, though, Dutch laws are more specific, dictating that alcohol is a liquid, not a solid.
“Because the alcohol is not in liquid form, we can sell it to people below 16,” said project member Martyn van Nierop. […] The students said companies interested in making the product commercially could avoid taxes because the alcohol was in powder form. A number of companies are interested, they said.
I’d actually be interested in seeing chapter and verse of Dutch law quoted that states, explicitly, its regulation of alcohol is on the fluid version only. The reason I suspect such a statement might not exist is simply that it wouldn’t have occurred to anyone alcohol might not be a fluid. That is, I can’t imagine a Nederlander lawmaker saying, “You know, Pym, we should make sure to add we’re talking about the fluid known as ethanol, as opposed to the ice crystal or gaseous version.”
A search of the Arizona statutes seems to back me up on this — laws are present which refer to alcohol, intoxication and spiritous liquors — as well as the regulation and control of booze — and there’s nowhere near enough wiggle room for our Dutch friends to open a market here selling their new and improved Lik-M-Aid. For instance:
4–244. Unlawful acts
It is unlawful: […]
40. For a person under the age of twenty-one years to have in the person’s body any spirituous liquor.
“But it’s not a spiritous liquor!” one might protest. “It’s powdered!” Sure. Until you add water.
I presume Dutch laws contain similar wording — this same statute in another subsection specifically forbids sale of spiritous liquor to minors, but it doesn’t matter, because consumpton is illegal anyway — and the powder, once consumed, becomes a spiritous liquor. I think these students are a little too smart for their own good.
Which is too bad, because I was hoping they’d perform an encore in the form of liquid hashish. Oh well.
* Seriously. Think about it. This explains a hell of a lot of perversity.
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