There are concerns on how students are obtaining Prime Energy, which has been found at schools. The drink contains double Australia’s legal limit of caffeine, with roughly 56mg per 100ml, as set by the Food Standards Australia New Zealand code.
There are two kinds of Prime: ‘Hydration’ contains no caffeine, and is packed with antioxidants, B vitamins and electrolytes. ‘Energy’ however, contains 200 mg of caffeine.
Professor Ben Desbrow, a sports dietician at Griffith University, says the drinks are addictive and dangerous to children.
“Professionals are concerned that the influencers have no interest in the health and wellbeing of those who consume the product, and are merely focused on making profit,” says Professor Desbrow.
“The label states Prime Energy is not suitable for children under the age of 15, and should only be used under the supervision from a medical or dietetic professional.”
The drinks are in high demand and have recently hit Australian shelves in mid March, with limits being enforced per transactions at supermarkets.
A bottle of Prime retails for $4.50, however, resell online can exceed up to $20. Students have also reportedly been reselling Prime in the school playground.
Chaotic scenes have unfolded after supermarket shelves were stripped, almost instantly, of Prime.
After numerous schools banned Prime in Australia, KSI vowed to send a ‘truckload of Prime’ to schools who had banned the drink.
“A school had the AUDACITY to ban Prime, leaving their students dehydrated”, said KSI.
Schools have an important role in promoting healthy lifestyle habits and local community matters, and many in New South Wales have been engaging with parents to address specific concerns, and imposed bans on Prime if needed.
Consumption of highly addictive caffeinated drinks that exceed the daily limit intake can negatively impact children physiologically and cognitively, especially when they are still developing cognitive function.
Restlessness, increased breathing and heart rate, anxiety and insomnia, are all possible side effects that come with drinking high amounts of caffeine.
Retailers have been selling Prime in stores, with children buying them over the counter and from external websites. Parents have been urged to read the labels and become aware of what their children are consuming.
Lauren Semple, UOWTV.