The Australian Beverages Council, which represents the country’s energy drinks industry, has rebuffed a proposal for age restrictions on the purchase on energy drinks that appeared in an article on news.com.au.
Australian Government data released as part of a broad-ranging review into caffeine shows that the average 14-16 year old gets 32 per cent of their daily dietary caffeine from coffee, 5.2 per cent from flavoured milk and 4.5 per cent from confectionery and muesli bars. Only 3.8 per cent of their daily dietary caffeine comes from energy drinks.
ABS data released as part of the ‘Australian Health Survey’ shows that the mean intake of energy drinks across all 14-18 year olds was just 6.3ml, representing less than 0.4 per cent of total intake of all non-alcoholic, non-dairy beverages. In this age group, just 1.7 per cent of the entire population consumed energy drinks.
“Restricting energy drinks to under 16 years is unnecessary, unwarranted and not supported by any of the available evidence,” Australian Beverages Council CEO Geoff Parker said. “Energy drinks are by far one of the smallest contributors to teenage daily caffeine intake in Australia.
“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 schools.”