AeroShots of Caffeine Hit Massachusetts

Back on November 21, 2010, our blog had a report about Four Loko in Massachusetts, which was about to be banned by the Massachusetts Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission. Now, we are looking at the new phenomenon, AeroShot. College students in Massachusetts, and elsewhere, are trying the new caffeine delivery system.

AeroShot, from the Cambridge, Massachusetts company Breathable Foods and manufactured in France, is now available in Massachusetts and other states, for about $3 a tube. It looks like a lipstick tube and contains 100 milligrams of caffeine and B vitamins. The canister contains about six shots of lemon lime flavored power, for a total of zero calories. The powder dissolves in your mouth. While the promoters say the product is simply caffeine without the coffee, or sugar (such as with Red Bull), others are warning that it may be utilized when consuming alcohol.
For example, if you drink multiple cups of coffee, you are not likely to be consuming alcohol as well. Moreover, it takes a while. However, if you are consuming alcohol, popping the Aeroshots is easy and quick. While the packaging says not to use more than three puffs per day, it’s hard to know how consumption will actually work, especially on college campuses where experimentation with drugs, alcohol and caffeine has historically occurred.
The product was developed by Harvard professor of biomedical engineering David Edwards, who has developed other breathable foods, including chocolate, and medications. He has developed inflatable insulin for medical purposes. His goals are to find synergies between products, art and design. His work focus a lot on how to get different flavors incorporated in similar biodegradable canisters, including chocolate another foods and drinks.
While Dr. Edwards need not worry about the effects of AeroShot, and the delivery system is quite brilliant, we need to be vigilant as Massachusetts consumers of the use and how it affects those who drink and then, of course, drive. Like Four Loko, giving individuals the perception that their consumption of alcohol is not as high as it actually is, can be dangerous. This is especially true with new products. The excitement of the novelty needs to be balanced with the concern for its use.
The product is clearly starting off with controversy. Senator Schumer of New York has asked the Food and Drug Administration to review the product, and the American Academy of Pediatrics has criticized the “party drug” promotion.
As a Massachusetts injury lawyer, I wonder about the effects on alcohol and driving. On the other hand, Dr. Edwards’ products may actually deliver nutrition and medicine via breathing! Getting a flavor experience without calories, or with nominal calories, may be on the forefront of science. For example, breathing medicine avoids the safety concerns of consumption into the gastrointestinal tract or into the lungs. With a lab in Paris, called ArtScience Lab, Dr. Edwards is working on other products. Of course this is very controversial now, but the potential uses of the product (not the caffeine, but the delivery system) seem fascinating.