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 milligrams of caffeine per can, Prime Energy exceeds the regulator’s acceptable caffeine limit of 180 mg 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.
It said caffeinated energy drinks are considered supplemented food and are therefore regulated by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
Both agencies are working to address the issue, Health Canada said in an email.
Prime Hydration is the non-caffeinated and bottled version of the canned beverage Prime Energy. They are among multiple other brands of energy drinks popular among children and teens.
Social media stars Logan Paul and KSI co-founded Prime and have been widely criticized for promoting it online to their young fan base.
Health Canada recommends a maximum of 2.5 mg of caffeine per kilogram of body weight for youth up to age 18.
By comparison, a can of Coke has 34 mg of caffeine, six times less than the amount in a serving of Prime Energy.
Calgary dietitian Jennifer House said parents are often concerned about their kids consuming too much sugar.
But she said caffeinated drinks could be a bigger problem because very young kids, like her nine-year-old son, are being bombarded by ads for Prime Energy when they watch online videos.
House said parents should talk to their children about the negative effects of caffeine, including sleep disturbances, but that’s all the more challenging with teens, including her 16-year-old son, because they tend to be out on their own and follow what their friends are doing.
“They’re making their own choices so it’s not really something you can control. So then we have to leave it up to Health Canada to rein this in a little bit,” she said, adding the choice of energy drinks in general seems endless.
“When my son was in Grade 10 he said the vending machines in high school are filled with energy drinks.”
The Canadian Press