The New Alcoholic Energy Drink Craze


A potentially money-saving beverage you may have never heard of could be available in energy drink section at your local convenience store. Or maybe in the beer section.

How You Save

Instead of paying for Red Bull and vodka, frugal drinkers are increasingly opting for caffeinated alcoholic drinks like Joose and Four Loko, according to The Wall Street Journal.

That’s because the drinks, found in chains like 7-Eleven, pack a forceful caffeine punch along with a bigger alcohol buzz than you’d get from a Budweiser (Stock Quote: BUD), for instance. Some of the drinks, including Four Loko, contain as much as 12% alcohol by volume.

Catching on to the Buzz

Sales of Joose products at food, convenience and drug stores reached 1.3 million cases in the last 12 months through June, more than triple the number of cases sold the previous year, The Journal reported.

And since sales of things like alcohol and chocolate have remained fairly steady while spending on other luxuries has fallen. That boost in sales could be linked to the recession.

The Risks

It’s important to note, however, that mixing caffeine with alcohol could make drinkers feel less intoxicated than they really are, some researchers say.

A study conducted at Wake Forest University School of Medicine in 2007 found that students who consumed alcohol mixed with energy drinks were twice as likely to be hurt or injured, twice as likely to require medical attention, and twice as likely to ride with an intoxicated driver than students who did not consume alcohol mixed with energy drinks.

“We knew anecdotally … that college students mix energy drinks and alcohol in order to drink more, and to drink longer,” said Dr. Mary Claire O’Brien, the study’s lead researcher.

The sweet, caffeinated alcoholic drinks might also appeal to underaged drinkers with flavors including orange, grape and tropical fruit.

Related Stories:

Simple Pleasures Thrive in Recession

Brewers Roll Out New Light, Craft Beers

Stock Your Home Bar for $105

—For the best rates on loans, bank accounts and credit cards, enter your ZIP code at

Show Comments

Back to Top