HONG KONG: Red Bull says cocaine traces are “impossible”
Energy drink producer Red Bull has said Hong Kong authorities that have reportedly found traces of cocaine in its beverages are "confused".
Officials at the Centre for Food Safety in Hong Kong have found traces of the illegal drug in samples of Red Bull Cola, Red Bull Sugar-free and Red Bull Energy Drink, according to a report in Agence France Presse today (2 June), citing a spokesperson for the Center.
Red Bull said in a statement to just-drinks today that it is "absolutely impossible" for them to have found traces.
It is understood the Centre for Food Safety found traces of cocaine between 0.1 and 0.3 micrograms of the illegal drug per litre.
A spokesperson for Red Bull said: "The Hong Kong authorities appear to be confused. They picked up concerns in Germany about an entirely different product that is not even available in Hong Kong or any other Asian market - Red Bull Simply Cola (and not energy drink).
"Some German authorities had raised concerns regarding this very different product Red Bull Simply Cola, due to the use of a decocainised coca leaf extract in that product. Decocainised coca leaf extracts are used as flavouring in foodstuffs around the world and have long been considered to be safe."
Austria-based Red Bull said it had the Hong Kong product samples analysed by an independent institute, which found no traces of cocaine.
"We expect the Hong Kong authorities to recognise their error soon," the spokesperson said.
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