When I shared the Grady parent note on AJC Get Schooled Facebook this morning, many readers said this is not new, noting pure vanilla extract has always contained alcohol and thus posed a temptation to teens, along with cough syrups and mouthwashes.
Among the comments:
-Drinking Vanilla extract as alcohol is nothing new. Back in my high school days kids made "super vanilla" ice cream.
-All vanilla extracts are full of alcohol.... kids getting drunk on it is nothing new. Cross-reference: my middle school in the early 90s.
-ALL extracts. The lemon extract in my cupboard (which comes in a relatively big bottle - 4 oz.) is 90% alcohol.
-At least the Trader Joe's staff is aware of it. I bought a bottle of the alcohol-free extract last week at this store and the cashier told me they were watching sales of vanilla carefully because of this issue. Also, what a truly expensive way to get a little bit of alcohol....
-You can go to Publix or Kroger or Whole Foods or wherever. It's in their cabinets at home. I'm sure TJs is convenient, but let's not act like that's the only source for their swill.
- I think the point they're making is that the word "Bourbon" makes it more appealing or eye-catching to teens. Perhaps it's a marketing ploy, and it's worked, but for the wrong demographic.
I have to assume this began with one teenager finding the extract -- often used in holiday baking and in banana pudding -- in the pantry at home and sampling it. I doubt too many students peruse the baking aisle.