Scientific Opinion on the safety of caffeine


Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies
EFSA Journal
EFSA Journal 2015;13(5):4102 [120 pp.].
Panel members at the time of adoption
Carlo Agostoni, Roberto Berni Canani, Susan Fairweather-Tait, Marina Heinonen, Hannu Korhonen, Sébastien La Vieille, Rosangela Marchelli, Ambroise Martin, Androniki Naska, Monika Neuhäuser-Berthold, Grażyna Nowicka, Yolanda Sanz, Alfonso Siani, Anders Sjödin, Martin Stern, Sean (J.J.) Strain, Inge Tetens, Daniel Tomé, Dominique Turck and Hans Verhagen.

The Panel wishes to thank the members of the Working Group on caffeine: Diane Benford, Ursula Gunder-Remy, Monika Neuhäuser-Berthold, Anders Sjödin, Josef Schlatter and Hans Verhagen for the preparatory work on this scientific opinion and EFSA staff: Davide Arcella, Arianna Chiusolo, Wolfgang Gelbmann and Silvia Valtueña Martínez for the support provided to this scientific opinion.

Opinion of the Scientific Committee/Scientific Panel
On request from
European Commission
Question Number
23 aprile 2015
Published in the EFSA Journal
27 maggio 2015
European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Parma, Italy

Following a request from the European Commission, the EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies was asked to deliver a scientific opinion on the safety of caffeine, providing advice on caffeine intakes, from all dietary sources that do not give rise to concerns about adverse health effects for the general healthy population and subgroups thereof. Possible interactions between caffeine and other constituents of so-called “energy drinks”, alcohol, p-synephrine and physical exercise should also be addressed. Single doses of caffeine up to 200 mg (about 3 mg/kg bw for a 70-kg adult) do not give rise to safety concerns. The same amount does not give rise to safety concerns when consumed < 2 hours prior to intense physical exercise under normal environmental conditions. Other constituents of “energy drinks” at typical concentrations in such beverages (about 300–320, 4 000 and 2 400 mg/L of caffeine, taurine and d-glucurono-γ-lactone, respectively), as well as alcohol at doses up to about 0.65 g/kg bw, would not affect the safety of single doses of caffeine up to 200 mg. Habitual caffeine consumption up to 400 mg per day does not give rise to safety concerns for non-pregnant adults. Habitual caffeine consumption up to 200 mg per day by pregnant women does not give rise to safety concerns for the fetus. Single doses of caffeine and habitual caffeine intakes up to 200 mg consumed by lactating women do not give rise to safety concerns for breastfed infants. For children and adolescents, the information available is insufficient to derive a safe caffeine intake. The Panel considers that caffeine intakes of no concern derived for acute caffeine consumption by adults (3 mg/kg bw per day) may serve as a basis to derive single doses of caffeine and daily caffeine intakes of no concern for these population subgroups.

caffeine, taurine, D-glucurono-γ-lactone, p-synephrine, alcohol, physical activity, “energy drinks”
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