June 2, 2009

Hong Kong: Traces Of Cocaine In Red Bull Energy Drinks

Officials at the Center for Food Safety in Hong Kong reported finding trace amounts of cocaine in cans of "Red Bull Cola," "Red Bull Sugar-free" and "Red Bull Energy Drink".

The report came just days after Taiwanese authorities confiscated almost 18,000 cases of the energy drink. The Center in Hong Kong reported traces of cocaine between 0.1 and 0.3 micrograms per liter.

Red Bull argued against the findings, stating that independent tests on the same batch had not discovered a trace of cocaine.

"Cocaine is a dangerous drug... The possession and dealing in the drug is a criminal offense," said Sally Wong, Hong Kong's commissioner for narcotics.

Wong added that the government would be seeking legal advice to determine any liability.

"It would have been absolutely impossible for the Hong Kong or any other authorities to have found traces of cocaine in Red Bull Energy Drink," said Daniel Beatty, Red Bull's Asia Pacific marketing director.

"We expect the Hong Kong authorities to recognize their error soon," he added.

Beatty said Red Bull's representatives were already meeting with Taiwanese authorities to point out the error, according to AFP.