FDA should ban powdered caffeine, Dems say

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) should ban powdered caffeine following the deaths of two people who consumed the substance for what turned out to be a lethal energy boost, top Senate Democrats said Tuesday.

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Swallowing one teaspoon of pure caffeine is as powerful as drinking 28 cups of coffee, according to the FDA.

The FDA has taken steps to restrict powdered caffeine marketing efforts by five companies, but it has yet to ban the substance. The senators pointed to another 19 companies that still sell it.

They said the FDA has been a “bitter disappointment” in dealing with the issue.

In a letter to the FDA sent Tuesday, Sens. Dick DurbinDick DurbinEmanuel to take hot seat in Senate confirmation hearing Manchin, Tester voice opposition to carbon tax Democrats feel high anxiety in Biden spending conflict MORE (Ill.), Charles SchumerChuck SchumerFixing Congress requires fixing how it legislates Beware the tea party of the left Bottom line MORE (N.Y.), Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownAmerica can end poverty among its elderly citizens Senate GOP signals they'll help bail out Biden's Fed chair Building back better by investing in workers and communities MORE (Ohio), Richard Blumenthal (Conn.), and Ed MarkeyEd MarkeyEmanuel to take hot seat in Senate confirmation hearing Manchin climate stance threatens to shatter infrastructure bargain Senate GOP signals they'll help bail out Biden's Fed chair MORE (Mass.) urged the agency to ban the sale of powdered caffeine.

"It is disturbing that despite two unintended and untimely deaths associated with powdered caffeine, the FDA has done little to regulate these products or adequately enforce the standards in place to protect Americans,” the lawmakers wrote. 

“These products do not provide a way to measure a safe dosage per FDA recommendations, and are sold in quantities that could easily kill hundreds of individuals if ingested incorrectly,” they added.