Energy drinks alcohol mix ban called by Foundation

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 17th November 2011

The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE), has called for a ban on the sale of premixed alcohol and energy drink (AED) products in Australia.

Research into consumption habits, commissioned by FARE and undertaken by Turning Point Alcohol and Drug Centre, found that young people in Australia are regularly consuming between three and five alcohol and energy drinks a night, and some drinking as many as ten.

Turning Point’s lead researcher, Amy Pennay, said that mixing alcohol and energy drinks results in increased heart-rate, increased likelihood of vomiting, sleeplessness and a worse hangover.

She said, “Alcohol and energy drinks are routinely used by young people to stay out longer than they normally would be able to, resulting in them ignoring their bodies messages that it’s time to call it a night.”

FARE has called for:

  • Banning pre-mixed alcohol and energy drinks;
  • Banning promotions on mixing alcohol and energy drinks in licensed premises;
  • Public education on the potential damages that can result from mixing alcohol and energy drinks;
  • Labeling energy drinks with warnings about the potential harms associated with mixing alcohol and energy drinks;
  • Asking liquor licensing authorities to investigate whether energy drinks should be sold on licensed premises.

Regulatory measures of AEDs made overseas

In America last year the US Food and Drug Administration moved to ban premixed alcohol and energy drinks, while in Norway the drinks can now only be sold through pharmacies. Meanwhile, Canada has revised its labeling laws to require a warning on energy drinks packaging to warn consumers against mixing with alcohol.

Michael Thorn, Chief Executive of FARE, said, “We are just starting to come to terms with the potential problems with these drinks and in light of the overseas experience we strongly believe the Australian Government needs to take action.’