“The DAWN Report is more sensational than substantive. The report suggests that of the 136 million emergency room visits in a year, less than two one-hundredths of a percent are allegedly associated with energy drinks. Of that amount, 42 percent were by someone who had admitted to consuming alcohol or taking illegal substances or pharmaceuticals. In addition, we know nothing about the overall health of these individuals, if they had consumed other caffeinated products, taken medications or accurately self-reported any of the above. Nor do we know what symptoms or incidents brought them to the ER in the first place. Without this information it’s impossible to understand the actual role – if any – of energy drinks in these hospital visits.
“This report does not share information about the overall health of those who may have consumed energy drinks, or what symptoms brought them to the ER in the first place. In fact, it shows that 42 percent of the reported ER visits were by someone who had admitted to consuming alcohol or taking illegal substances or pharmaceuticals. However, there is no way to assess whether any of the remaining individuals chose not to report this fact, and the consumption of those substances along with energy drinks means the energy drinks may be irrelevant. Additionally, there is no basis by which to understand the overall caffeine intake of any of these individuals – from all sources, from coffee or other caffeinated products.
Importantly, caffeine has been deemed safe for consumption by the FDA and most mainstream energy drinks contain about half the caffeine of a similarsize cup of coffeehouse coffee.”
“We may be in a new year, but there is nothing new about the ways our critics try to attack our industry. This research is nothing more than an abstract – it has not been peer-reviewed, published or even, at the very least, presented at a scientific meeting. Furthermore, neither this abstract nor the body of scientific evidence supports that drinking soda or other sweetened beverages causes depression. Thus, promoting any alleged findings without supporting evidence is not only premature, but irresponsible.”
"It’s important to note that the series of articles in the British Medical Journal exhibited a clear bias by overlooking widely accepted research on sports drinks. Furthermore, suggesting that industry-funded nutrition-related scientific studies may bias conclusions fails to look at the merits of the science in those studies and disregards the integrity of the peer-review process enforced by the highly regarded scientific journals.
Importantly, we know hydration is essential for good health, and science clearly shows that the water, carbohydrates and electrolytes in sports drinks provide significant hydration and athletic performance benefits. Furthermore, our member companies' marketing makes it clear that these functional beverages are formulated for athletes and those who are physically active. However, sports drinks – which are available in a range of calories - can also be an option for those who are working out, training, exposed to high temperatures or simply seeking refreshment as part of an active and healthy lifestyle."
In response to "Emergency Department Visits Involving Energy Drinks," a paper appearing in today's issue of The DAWN Report, the American Beverage Association issued the following statement:
On America Recycles Day and every day, the non-alcoholic beverage industry is committed to further minimizing its environmental footprint by reducing, reusing and recycling.
"Our industry's commitment to recycling shows not only through our 100 percent recyclable packaging, but also through our efforts to minimize waste and to support recycling programs," said Susan Neely, American Beverage Association president and CEO.
In response to "Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Consumption and Incident Cardiovascular Risk Factors: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis," an abstract released today and to be presented on Wednesday at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2011, the American Beverage Association issued the following statement:
"By looking at data from 2004 and 2007, this study ignores the dramatic changes in the school beverage landscape achieved by our industry over the last five years, making it effectively useless. In fact, by offering only juice, low-fat milk and water in elementary and middle schools, with the addition of lower-calorie and portion-controlled beverages in high schools, the signatory companies drove an 88 percent reduction in beverage calories shipped to schools since 2004. President Clinton called this ‘breathtaking progress' and applauded industry for its' ‘good faith and aggressiveness' in implementing the guidelines."
"The people at our member companies - many of whom are parents themselves - are delivering on their commitment to advertise only water, juice and milk on programming for children under 12. In fact, recent research supports that there has been a dramatic change in food and beverage advertising during children's programming, with advertisements for soft drinks decreasing by 96 percent between 2004 and 2010 alone. This report is another attack by known critics in an ongoing attempt to single out one product as the cause of obesity when both common sense and widely accepted science have shown that the reality is far more complicated."
America's non-alcoholic beverage industry is comprised of some of the most innovative and well-respected companies in the world. Our presence is felt in every corner of every community in America - from our products in the aisles of neighborhood stores, to our local delivery drivers who distribute them, to our support of local food banks, community initiatives and more. We're an industry that takes extraordinary steps to be part of the solution, whether it's helping meet a community need, doing our part to address childhood obesity or making our calories more clear for consumers.