ID, please — age limit being demanded for Dutch energy drinks

People in the Netherlands can waltz into any store, except for Aldi and Lidl, and buy the energy drink of their choice — but many supermarket chains are calling for an age limit on energy drinks.

European consumer rights advocacy group Foodwatch, along with several Dutch supermarkets such as Albert Heijn, Jumbo, and Plus, are calling for strict age limits rules around energy drinks sales in the Netherlands. 📣

Currently, the age limit for energy drinks in Aldi and Lidl is 14 years old. The list of supermarkets mentioned above — without the age limit — make up for 90% of total energy drink sales in the Netherlands.

The stores are in agreement that rules should be built around these products, as long as all chains participate.

In 2018, a motion was raised by the Dutch Association for Pediatrics (NVK) to set limitations around Dutch energy drinks sales based on reports that the drinks contain high doses of caffeine, sugar, and taurine.

High dosages of these chemicals can lead to restlessness, fatigue, and cardiac arrhythmias, which can send underage kids to emergency rooms.

Some drinks promise wings or a monster-like behaviour but never mention hospitalization I suppose. 🙄

Regulations who?

Which Dutch official(s) or governmental organization can take a closer look at this argument? Well, for starters, the Dutch Central Food Trade Bureau (CBL) already called it quits on the matter, as they announced that they don’t want to be involved in this discussion. Doei. 🏃‍♂️ 

Next on the legislators’ list is the Dutch Ministry of Health, which is being called out by Foodwatch for an examination of the situation in the Netherlands.

However, back in 2018, the ministry indicated they don’t feel there’s a need for an age limit. Time to re-examine, maybe? 🔎

RIVM study

The Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) had already released study findings in 2018 regarding the health hazards of energy drinks for minors.

The results confirmed the Netherlands Nutrition Center’s advice for 13 to 18-year-olds that it is better not to consume energy drinks at all — or a drink maximum of one can per day.

What do you think of having an age limit on energy drinks sales in the Netherlands? Tell us in the comments below!

Feature Image: mary_smn/Depositphotos

Farah Al Mazouni
Farah believes she's been on many adventures during her millennial life, each for a different (sometimes invisible) purpose. The latest adventure whisked her away to Amsterdam for love, and what a magical surprise she found in this city. Armed with imaginary confetti in her pocket, and ready to celebrate all wins, big and small, Farah says "ahla w sahla" or “welcome” to her latest adventure in this wonderland.


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