MEDIA STATEMENT

27 March 2014

Calls for a ban on energy drinks are misguided and without evidence

The Australian Beverages Council has responded to a petition presented today to Federal Parliament by the Country Women’s Association (CWA) NSW and Australian Medical Association (AMA) which calls for the ban of energy drink sales to children.

“Calls for a ban on energy drinks are misguided and lacking evidence. The beverage industry already follows a strict policy to only market energy drinks to adults. Aside from this, government data released as part of a broad ranging review into caffeine paints a clear picture of where teenagers get their caffeine from. In the 14-16 year old bracket, just 3.8% of their total caffeine intake is from energy drinks,” said CEO Geoff Parker.

“The caffeine this age group gets from coffee is nearly ten times that from energy drinks, at 32%. Chocolate, flavoured milk, tea and other drinks all contributed 56% of caffeine in the diet for 14-16 year olds and other foods made up the remaining 6% of caffeine intake.

By law, energy drinks are clearly labelled that they are not suitable for children and no more than two per day should be consumed by adults.

The industry commits to the following guidelines:

 

• Energy drinks are not made available in primary nor secondary schools

• Marketing and advertising activities of energy drinks are not directed at children

• No promotional activities are undertaken that encourage excessive consumption of energy drinks

• Labels of energy drinks do not promote the mixing of energy drinks with any other beverage.

 

“Australia’s strict regulations, in addition to a cap on the caffeine content, equivalent to an instant cup of coffee for a 250mL can (80mg), make our energy drink regulations the toughest in the world,” Mr Parker concluded.

270314 ABCL Response to CWA and AMA petition to ban energy drink sales to kids

Media contact:

Geoff Parker – Chief Executive Officer, Australian Beverages Council

+61 (0)407 646 195

The Australian Beverages Council is the peak body for the non-alcoholic beverages industry and represents 95% of the industry’s production volume through membership.

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