Youth, adults, and community organizations from across Marin County rallied Friday evening in the Canal area of San Rafael to encourage the More for Less convenience store to voluntarily stop selling all youth-attractive flavored malt beverages (FMBs) known as alcopops, according to alcoholic beverage industry watchdog Alcohol Justice.
Rob Frost, owner of the Sacramento-based chain, said that he would pull some brands like Four Loko, Tilt, and Sparks. However, he also said that for now, they would continue to sell Smirnoff Ice, Mike's Hard Lemonade lines, and E & J Gallo's Bartles & Jaymes brand of FMBs.
"We were happy to see More for Less take 'Youth for Justice' demands seriously, but all alcopops need to go," Micaela Robinson-Duran, a ninth-grade student from , said in a statement.
"More for Less is a local store and should be more responsive to kids and the community," said Bruce Lee Livingston, Alcohol Justice executive director. "This half-hearted attempt is just not good enough."
"More for Less needs to stop supporting the alcohol industry's attempt to entice under age drinking by removing all alcopop products from their shelves," said Don Carney, Director of the YMCA Marin County Youth Court.
"As a parent in the San Rafael community, I don't think More for Less is getting the message," stated Mark Dale, founder of Families for Safer Schools. "Supporting the Alcopop-Free Zone, means pulling all brands. If they really want to put the futures of our children and families ahead of sales and profits, they'll pull them all."
Current Alcopop-Free Zone Marin campaign supporters include:
- Alcohol Justice
- Being Adept
- Families for Safer Schools
- Marin County Dept. of Health & Human Services Prevention Hub
- Marin County Pharmacists Association
- Novato Blue Ribbon Coalition for Youth
- Pharmacist Planning Service, Inc.
- Santa Margarita Neighborhood Association
- Twin Cities Coalition for Healthy Youth
- Marin County Youth Court
- Youth Leadership Institute
- Youth for Justice
The organization said alcopops, or flavored malt beverages (FMBs):
- Are pre-mixed, sweetened alcoholic drinks that taste like juice and soda
- Are packaged in brightly-colored cans, similar to energy drinks
- Are priced low enough to effectively target underage drinkers, especially young women
- Can be shelved wherever beer is available - including convenience stores, gas stations, and mini-marts
- Come in supersized 24 oz. single-serving containers with 12 percent alcohol - the equivalent of 4-5 beers which cannot be consumed responsibly by any age drinker
- Encourage underage consumption which leads to serious alcohol-related harm
"The Youth for Justice group and the entire Alcopop-Free Zone Marin coalition intends to approach every alcohol retailer in Marin and ask for an end to alcopops," added Livingston. "These high-alcohol content, sweet drinks have no place in the Canal community, the county or the country."
"Youth for Justice" is a Canal neighborhood group of middle and high school-aged leaders concerned with alcohol and other drug problems in their community.
The Alcopop-Free Zone Marin coalition announced it is open to any agency or group to join their efforts to remove alcopops from the county. Click here for more info, please visit .