What is 'Borg'? Gen Z's viral TikTok booze trend that hospitalized dozens in UMass explained
The latest drinking game to take over American universities and TikTok feeds is Borg, or 'Blackout Rage Gallons,' which experts have already warned about. But what is a Borg?
The gallon bottle of a normal Borg is half filled with water, a whopping fifth with alcohol (about 17 shots) and a liquid flavor enhancer such as Liquid IV Hydration Multiplier. The person making the Borg gives it a fun name and keeps it with them throughout the party.
What is Borg viral drinking trend about?
Containers also known as 'blackout rage gallons,' contain a mixture of alcohol, water and electrolytes. The TikTok trend #borg, which has been viewed more than 82 million times, shows people pouring out about half the water from the gallon and filling it up with alcohol, usually a liquor like vodka, as well as juice or electrolytes.
On TikTok, the college drinking craze has gone mainstream, and people there claim that drinking from a Borg might reduce the likelihood of a hangover. According to experts, this is simply untrue, and it is extremely concerning that some students hold this belief.
What happened at University of Massachusets?
Dozens of students at the University of Massachusetts were hospitalized over the weekend after participating in a dangerous binge-drinking trend. 28 ambulances were dispatched to off-campus parties over the weekend, according to University of Massachusetts Amherst, which attributes the calls to a TikTok Borg trend, reports New York Post.
School officials claim they observed teenagers Saturday carrying "borgs" or "blackout rage gallons," giant water jugs containing a combination of alcohol, electrolytes and flavorings.
Recent viral videos on TikTok of college students making and consuming the concoction have further fueled its popularity (although some videos referencing the drink date back to 2020). The popular drink has led to Borg challenges, Borg challenges, and Borg skits.
Borg encourages binge drinking
The fact that it is an easy way to get drunk with readily available and delicious ingredients is probably the reason why the trend has caught on with Generation Z. Collegiates believe that the Borg electrolyte booster also helps them stay hydrated. The truth, however, is that the new drink trend is "very harmful," according to health experts, as it encourages binge drinking.
Sarah O’Brien, an addiction specialist says “I can’t find an upside to it. I don’t think mixing a gallon of liquor with a mixer is good for any communities, especially younger generations,” reports Yahoo.
One fifth of alcohol equals about 16 drinks, Nicole Barr, a direct services coordinator at the University of North Carolina Wilmington's Abrons Student Health Center, tells CBS News. Students on TikTok also praise the Borg as a responsible way to drink to alleviate hangovers because it contains water and electrolytes such as liquid IV, according to videos posted on social media.
However, the dilution of alcohol can lead one to believe they aren't drinking as much as they actually are, especially those who add caffeine. Nevertheless, there are risk-free methods of consumption, and even something as essential as a borg would have negative consequences from the alcohol.