The authors of this paper allege an association between energy drink consumption and other consumption patterns but, importantly, demonstrating association is not the same as establishing causation.
In response to a paper to be published in the February issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, Dr. Maureen Storey, senior vice president of science policy for the American Beverage Association, issued the following statement:
"The authors of this paper allege an association between energy drink consumption and other consumption patterns but, importantly, demonstrating association is not the same as establishing causation. In fact, the findings of this study do not show that energy drinks encourage misuse of alcohol in any way and state that further research is warranted.
Even so, there is nothing unique about the caffeine in energy drinks. In fact, most mainstream energy drinks actually contain about half the caffeine of a similar size cup of coffeehouse coffee. That means that college students enjoying a coffee at the corner coffeehouse are getting about twice as much caffeine as they would from an energy drink.
Regardless, caffeine is one of the most thoroughly tested ingredients in the food supply today and has been deemed safe by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, as well as more than 140 countries around the world. Our member companies meet all government labeling regulations, listing caffeine on product labels when it is added as an ingredient. And for years, ABA member companies have provided caffeine content information through their Web sites and consumer hotlines. In addition, some of our member companies voluntarily list the amount of caffeine directly on a product's label.
The authors' focus on this product category does little to shed light on the serious problem of binge drinking and alcoholism among young adults.
Importantly, ABA member companies manufacture non-alcoholic beverages, including energy drinks, but do not manufacture or distribute alcoholic beverages."
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The American Beverage Association is the trade association representing the broad spectrum of companies that manufacture and distribute non-alcoholic beverages in the United States.