Chicago energy drinks ban falls flat

Bill Bruce8 Mar 2013

According to reports in the US press, a proposal to ban energy drinks in Chicago has 'fizzed to a halt' after city lawmakers found the idea that high-caffeine beverages pose an immediate danger to the public ‘hard to swallow’.

A hearing of the city council committee failed to vote on a proposal by alderman Edward Burke to prohibit the sale of drinks with 180 or more milligrams of caffeine, and that also include the stimulants taurine or guarana.

While the hearing did not result in a vote, members decided to retain the matter for further consideration at a later date.

According to CPS.net, there remains a possibility that an age-related ban could be implemented instead.

“At the end of the day, you want better consumer protection, and that means labelling,” said alderman George Cardenas, who oversaw the hearing as chairman of the Health Committee.

The move to ban the drinks comes in the wake of a lawsuit filed against Monster Beverage Corp by the parents of Anais Fournier, who died from cardiac problems after drinking two large cans of Monster Energy Drink on two successive days. The defence team maintains that the 14-year-old’s death was caused by a pre-existing heart condition.

According to the Chicago Tribune, drinks manufacturers obviously considered the threat of a ban in Chicago serious. The American Beverage Association, Red Bull and 7-Eleven all had well-connected political insiders lobbying against the ban.

Source: Time/Chicago Tribune/CPS.net