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Popular Energy Drink Becomes Focus in FDA Investigation

Increasing concern continues to reign over the entire energy drink industry. Subsequently, understudied and unregulated ingredients contained within the popular energy drinks of today have been associated with adverse health events in populations that consume them on a regular basis. Of significant concern, however, are reports issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that recently acknowledged Monster Energy Drink has been cited in five deaths and one non-fatal heart attack.

Energy drinks, acting as an alternative to coffee, were first introduced in Europe as a means of caffeine supplementation. However, the industry received a significant boost when Red Bull entered the U.S. market in 1997. After the successful introduction of Red Bull, various beverage companies, including Coca-Cola and Pepsi, began developing energy drinks of their own. While Austria-based Red Bull remains the leader, subsequent energy drinks continue to saturate the market. According to experts, the current U.S. domestic market may exceed $10 billion.

Providing the most competition for Red Bull, however, is an energy drink by the name of Monster. Similar to that of Red Bull, Monster Energy provides consumers with a means of obtaining energy through the ingestion of highly caffeinated drinks. In fact, products spanning across the entire industry have been gaining popularity as the demand for soda has lessened.

Monster has benefited the most from the recent rise in popularity. Last year, the company had a 35 percent share of the energy-drink market based on volume, while Red Bull had 30 percent and Rockstar had 19 percent, according to Beverage Digest. However, increased popularity became synonymous with heightened scrutiny. The levels of caffeine in the drinks have raised worries: Although the FDA caps the amount of caffeine in soda to 0.02 percent, there is no such limit for energy drinks.

Complicating the already volatile situation, are five deaths and one non-fatal heart attack that have recently been attributed to the consumption of Monster Energy Drinks. According to reports regarding these incidents, individuals experienced severe complications following the ingestion of Monster Energy Drink, which comes in 24-ounce cans and contains 240 milligrams of caffeine. What is concerning, however, is that each Monster Energy Drink contains seven times the amount of caffeine found in a standard 12-ounce can of soda.

While allegations suggest that Monster Energy Drinks were responsible for these adverse health events, the FDA is currently conducting an investigation of their own. “As with any reports of a death or injury the agency receives, we take them very seriously and investigate diligently,” Shelly Burgess said in a statement.

News of the current investigation comes in the wake of a similar energy drink lawsuit filed last week. The parents of a 14-year-old girl filed a wrongful death suit in Riverside, California following the death of their daughter. According to court documents, the Hagerstown girl died after drinking two, 24-ounce Monster Energy Drinks in 24 hours. An autopsy concluded that she died of cardiac arrhythmia due to caffeine toxicity and the medical examiner also found that she had an inherited disorder that can weaken blood vessels. However, the child’s parents claim Monster failed to warn about the risks of drinking its products.

Do I Have an Energy Drink Lawsuit?

The trial lawyers at The Senators (Ret.) Firm, LLP have decades of experience navigating through complex legislative and regulatory issues and litigating high stakes cases all over the nation. Our law firm focuses on the representation of plaintiffs in energy drink lawsuits. We are currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.

If you or a loved one has been injured by an energy drink, you may be entitled to financial compensation. For a free case review, please click the link below or call toll free 24 hrs/day 1-800-773-0849.

Categories: Product Liability
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