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Liquor, Gambling & Lotteries
Media releases
13 October 2012

The Minister for Business Services and Consumers, John Rau, and the Liquor and Gambling Commissioner, Paul White, have today warned patrons in licensed venues to avoid alcoholic drinks containing liquid nitrogen, following the near-death of a British teenager last week.

“So-called designer cocktails that use liquid nitrogen for dramatic effect are becoming available interstate and overseas,” Mr Rau said.

“This is an unsafe practice and I do not want to see it being adopted in South Australian licensed venues.”

“We have now seen the potential consequences of this dangerous gimmick in the UK where an 18 year-old girl had to have her stomach removed after consuming liquid nitrogen.”

Mixing liquid nitrogen with an alcoholic cocktail provides a smoky or cloudy effect and is designed to promote the sale, supply and consumption of the product.

“The effect of consuming liquid nitrogen is similar to frost bite - it will burn your skin and organs. When it changes to a gas it expands like a balloon in your stomach,” Mr Rau said.

The Liquor and Gambling Commissioner, Paul White, says that inspectors from his office have identified two licensed venues in Adelaide offering alcoholic cocktails mixed with liquid nitrogen.

“The licensees have fully cooperated and agreed to immediately stop the sale, supply and consumption of these cocktails at their venues,” Mr White said.

“I cannot stress enough the dangers associated with the sale and supply of alcoholic drinks mixed with liquid nitrogen by licensees and I will move quickly if we find evidence of this practice happening in licensed premises in South Australia.”

“I take this opportunity to remind licensees that this represents a public safety issue under the Liquor Licensing Act and will also be viewed as a breach of the Code of Practice.”

“The Act provides the power for my office to impose conditions on a licence and to issue a public safety notice to deal with this type of situation.”

“And whatever you do, don’t drink one.”

People should contact Consumer and Business Services on 131 882 or via www.cbs.sa.gov.au if they see one of these drinks being sold or supplied on licensed premises.