Labour wants an alcohol limit on ready-to-drink (RTD) beverages and is going to try to amend the Alcohol Reform Bill.
The government is going to leave it up to the liquor industry to decide the limit - a decision Labour's Phil Goff says is "gutless".
"Alcohol levels in these drinks can be as high as eight per cent to 12 per cent, and sometimes up to 20 per cent," he said on Friday.
"Getting the alcohol industry to regulate itself is like putting the fox in charge of the hen house - they've had years to implement a more socially responsible approach and they haven't done it."
Mr Goff says the limit should be five per cent.
"The amendment I'm proposing is a moderate measure," he said.
"It doesn't ban RTDs but will limit their alcohol content and hopefully reduce the harm they cause."
The bill will be debated in parliament next week when it comes up for its committee stage.
It can be amended at that stage, but Mr Goff will have to persuade a majority of MPs to back his proposed change.