FDA to Investigate Breathable Caffeine Shots

At the

urging of Sen. Chuck Schumer
(D-New York), the Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) will
review the safety of Aero Shots
, a new breathable caffeine
product. The product allows users to ingest about 100mg of
caffeine—roughly the amount of caffeine in an average large cup of
coffee—in a powdered “shot” from a lipstick-shaped
container. 

“FDA will review information brought to the agency’s attention
about this product” in order to see “whether regulatory action is
warranted,” the agency
reportedly
said in a statement released to the press. It’s not
clear what actual information, if any, was brought to the FDA’s
attention, unless Sen. Schumer’s latest round of ban-happy
grandstanding
counts. Schumer has focused his attention on
worries that club-goers might rely on the boost provided by the
caffeine shots to party longer into the night, which sounds like
fun for those who enjoy clubbing, but not a matter that should
concern the FDA. 

Schumer doesn’t really have any evidence that the product is
harmful, but that is exactly what seems to concern him. He warns
that the product’s “effects have never been examined by independent
regulators to determine their impact on the human body and in
combination with alcohol, especially for adolescents.” Of course,
adolescents are already free to consume caffeine in soft drinks and
coffee, often in far larger doses than come from an Aero Shot.
Those who frequent Starbucks, for example, have the opportunity to
purchase single cups of coffee with an average of
330mg of caffeine
, more than three times the amount in one of
the shots. 

An ABC News
report
on the FDA decision quotes University of Florida
professor Dr. Bruce Goldberger expressing similar concerns about
youth access and the possibility that “you could mix it with
alcohol in a social setting.” Given the recent
hysteria over the caffienated alocoholic beverage Four Loko
,
this is sadly not surprising. But the ongoing freakout over the
possibility that someone might mix caffeine and alcohol will surely
vex America’s many whiskey-and-Coke drinkers. 

No matter what, it’s telling

You can read the rest of this article at: http://reason.com/blog/2012/02/21/fda-to-investigate-breathable-caffeine-s