Prime Drink Pulled From Stores in Canada

Regulator says it has too much caffeine
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 13, 2023 3:39 AM CDT
Prime Drink Pulled From Stores in Canada
Prime Energy, the influencer-backed energy drink that has earned viral popularity among children, is facing scrutiny from lawmakers and health experts over its potentially dangerous levels of caffeine.   (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

A caffeinated energy drink being promoted by American social media influencers is set to be recalled in Canada. Health Canada said Wednesday that at 200 milligram of caffeine per 12-ounce can, Prime Energy exceeds the regulator's acceptable caffeine limit of 180 milligram per serving and should not be sold. Health Canada said it's aware that some shops may be selling Prime Energy—which is different from the widely available Prime Hydration drink—without approval, the AP reports. It said caffeinated energy drinks are considered supplemented food and are therefore regulated by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Health Canada recommends a maximum of 2.5 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram of body weight for youth up to age 18. By comparison, a can of Coke has 34 milligrams of caffeine, six times less than the amount in a serving of Prime Energy. On Sunday, US Sen. Charles Schumer called on the Food and Drug Administration to investigate the brand. The FDA said in a statement Monday that it was reviewing Schumer's letter and would respond to the senator directly. A company representative said their energy drink, which comes with a warning label that it is "not recommended for children under 18," contains a comparable level of caffeine to other competitors.

Coffee can have more caffeine than energy drinks but it's not as strictly regulated, the CBC reports. Authorities say the biggest concern with drinks like Prime Energy is how it is being marketed. "It's framed as being fun, it's framed as being kind of trendy, it's framed as being healthy and it's framed also as optimizing your performance, when all it really is is water with caffeine in it," says Timothy Caulfield, an expert in health law and policy at the University of Alberta. (More energy drink stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.