Cocaine as High Energy Drink? No, Only in Name

by Gopalan on  July 5, 2008 at 11:35 AM Lifestyle News
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 Cocaine as High Energy Drink? No, Only in Name
Cocaine as high energy drink? No, it is only in name, manufacturers claim. But anti-drug campaigners in UK are not amused. They have slammed the marketing gimmick as irresponsible.

The new high energy drink has three times more caffeine than its rival, Red Bull.

It is due to be launched in the UK later this summer and will be sold with the words 'Cut Cocaine' spelled out in a white granular substance.

Anti-drug charities and alcohol groups are outraged. Already there are growing fears about the effects of high caffeine drinks, such as Red Bull, on young drinkers.

Harry Shapiro, director of DrugScope, said: 'This is clearly a piece of cynical and irresponsible marketing.

'However, I hope people will not be fooled by it. They have obviously picked this name because it is a high energy stimulant drink and there are other high energy stimulants out there - cocaine being one of them.'

David Raynes, of the UK National Drug Prevention Alliance, added: 'It is people exploiting drugs. It is a pretty cynical tactic exploiting illegal drugs for their own benefit.

'The fact is that subliminally, it is making the image of drug use cool and that's what kids want to be, cool.

'Kids will be drinking Cocaine and will inevitably link the two. The drink is relatively innocuous, but they will be linking it with cocaine use and the market, which is far from innocuous.'

The Cocaine drink is made from guarana - a natural 'caffeine' berry from South America - and contains 350 per cent more caffeine than Red Bull.

Las Vegas-based drinks company Redux Beverages claims the only way to get more caffeine per ounce is with an espresso.

The US version of the drink also contained wasabi and cinnamon, which numbed the throat to mimic the effect of taking cocaine for drinkers, reports Daily Mail.

However, in February this year Redux were forced to relaunch the drink following complaints from the Food and Drug Administration over its purported health benefits.

According to sources from the newly-formed UK parent company Ocke Cokey, based in Kent, the drink will be on the shelves in the next few weeks.

'It is going to create controversy, but that's the beauty of this name - everyone that objects to it is going to be selling my product,' the source said.

'You've got products like the perfumes Charlie and Opium and they're fine.'

Concern has been growing in recent times in Britain about the effects of high caffeine drinks, such as Red Bull, on young people.

Last month one Catholic high school in Worthing, West Sussex, made headlines after the headteacher banned pupils from drinking Red Bull on the premises.

Anne Ward, head of Chatsmore Catholic High, said she took action over concerns it was affecting pupils' behaviour. They were buying the drink on their way to school and being hyperactive and disruptive in lessons, she said.

Red Bull is also used as a mixer by teenagers and young adults when drinking spirits such as vodka.

One can of a high energy drink contains roughly the same amount of caffeine as a cup of filter coffee - or two cups of instant. Drunk in moderation, caffeine is a stimulant and drinking it 'wakes up' the person, giving them a jolt.

But drunk in excess, it can lead to insomnia, anxiety and hyperactivity.

Source: Medindia

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