The agency has warned four companies that the caffeine added to their malt alcoholic drinks is an “unsafe food additive” and threatened product seizures if appropriate action is not taken. The companies concerned are Charge Beverages Corp, New Century Brewing Co., Phusion Projects and United Brands Company.
Warning letters are being sent out following a scientific review conducted by the FDA on the co-consumption of caffeine and alcohol.
The review, which itself comes after the FDA asked manufacturers last November to provide evidence on the safety of their products, raised serious concerns about caffeinated alcoholic drinks. In particular, it questioned how they affect the ability of drinkers to judge their level of intoxication.
The FDA said peer-reviewed studies suggest that caffeinated alcoholic drinks can lead people to take risks that may be hazardous or life threatening.
It has therefore concluded that the use of caffeine in the products made by the four companies mentioned is not ‘generally recognised as safe’ (GRAS).
“FDA does not find support for the claim that the addition of caffeine to these alcoholic beverages is ‘generally recognized as safe,’ which is the legal standard,” said Dr. Joshua M. Sharfstein, principal deputy commissioner. “To the contrary, there is evidence that the combinations of caffeine and alcohol in these products pose a public health concern.” -- For full story go to BeverageDaily.com