European Food Safety Authority asked if caffeine safe

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 28th February 2013

The European Commission (EC) has decided to ask the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) to assess the safety of caffeine.

In particular the EC wants to know what the safe maximum level of caffeine intake from all sources is; how risky interaction between caffeine, alcohol and other ‘energy drink’ ingredients might be; and what levels of consumption are safe for different groups of people, including pregnant women, lactating women, children and adolescents.

The EC has decided to delay any authorisation of health claims about caffeine until the EFSA has provided its assessment.


Australian perspective

The EFSA assessment could have an impact on the developments in Australian regulation of caffeine.

Australian Food News reported in December that Australia and New Zealand food ministers had also commissioned a review of foods with caffeine.

Also, in a separate development in December 2012, Australian Food News reported that Australia’s leading consumer group CHOICE ran its own test on caffeinated drinks. CHOICE found that a long black coffee contained more caffeine than an energy drink.