NY Senator urges FDA to investigate the safety of caffeinated peanut butter. 

  • There is ongoing debate and concern about the safety of caffeine consumption, particularly as related to certain food products produced to deliver high doses of caffeine in small servings.  In recent months, FDA issued a series of Warning Letters to distributors of powdered caffeine and posted information on its website to warn consumers about the potential dangers associated with consuming the product.
  • Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) has issued a press release and a letter to FDA to express his concerns about the potential safety risks associated with a new caffeinated peanut butter product.  The producers of the product state that a single serving of the product (two tablespoons) provides approximately the same amount of caffeine as two cups of coffee.  Senator Schumer notes that the product provides five times more caffeine per serving than a single can of Coke and the same amount of caffeine as two Red Bulls.  The Senator appears particularly concerned for children’s safety because peanut butter is such a popular snack food among young consumers.
  • FDA previously has grappled with the caffeination of food products and has taken action with respect to products such as a caffeine inhaler, caffeinated alcoholic drinks, and caffeinated chewing gum.  It remains to be seen whether FDA will take action related to caffeinated peanut butter.  Either way, concerns about innovative caffeine delivery sources in the food supply are unlikely to vanish anytime soon.