Energy Drinks bans unnecessary, unwarranted and not supported by the evidence

21 July 2016

MEDIA RELEASE

Energy drink bans unnecessary, unwarranted and not supported by the evidence

The Australian Beverages Council, representing the local energy drinks industry, has today rejected calls for age restrictions on the purchase of energy drinks that appeared in a recent article on www.news.com.

“Restricting energy drinks to under 16 years is unnecessary, unwarranted and not supported by any of the available evidence” said the Council’s CEO, Mr Geoff Parker. “Existing regulations regarding energy drinks are already in place and are serving consumers well. The industry has also voluntarily committed to not market and advertise to children, or make energy drinks available in primary or secondary schools1.

“By law, energy drinks must be clearly labelled that they are not suitable for children and that no more than two per day should be consumed (2x250mL). These 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.

“Energy drinks are by far one of the smallest contributors to teenage daily caffeine intake in Australia. Australian Government data released as part of a broad ranging review into caffeine shows that the average 14-16 year old gets 32% of their daily dietary caffeine from coffee, 5.2% from flavoured milk and 4.5% from confectionery and muesli bars2. Only 3.8% of their daily dietary caffeine comes from energy drinks. ABS data released as part of the Australian Health Survey found that the mean intake of energy drinks across all 14-18 year olds was just 6.3mL, representing less than 0.4% of total intake of all non-alcoholic, non-dairy beverages3. In this age group, just 1.7% of the entire population consumed energy drinks. “The decision as to when an older teen is ready to consume an energy drink is the same decision as for coffee or tea. This is a discussion best led by parents around the kitchen table. To help parents and teens with that decision, the industry recently launched a website provides clear and transparent facts about energy drinks and their use – www.energydrinksinformation.org “Mr Parker concluded.

For more information contact:

Geoff Parker, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Beverages Council, M: 0407 646 195

References:
1 http://australianbeverages.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/EnergyDrinks_AnIndustryCommitment.pdf
2 The Regulation of Caffeine in Foods, Department of Health August 2013
https://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/A294B740C7928C3CCA257BF0001CFFF4/$File/The
%20Regulation%20of%20Caffeine%20in%20Foods.docx
3 Hendrie, G.A., Baird, D., Syrette, J., Barnes, M., Riley, M (2015) Consumption of non-dairy, non-alcoholic
beverages in the Australian population: A secondary analysis of the Australian National Nutrition and Physical Activity
Survey (NNPAS) 2011-12: Comprehensive Results, CSIRO, Australia.

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