Ever wondered why Red Bull gave you so much energy? It could be the cocaine.

Six German states have told retailers to stop selling Red Bull Cola energy drinks after a test found a trace amount of cocaine. The bans started Friday after a sample test conducted by authorities in North Rhine-Westphalia state found 0.4 micrograms per liter in the drink.

Germany's Federal Institute for Risk Assessment said Monday that the cocaine level was too low to pose a health risk but will be doing additional testing.




Red Bull might be the latest company to sell cocaine in their drink, but it sure wasn't the first. Coca-Cola was invented in 1885 and until the early 1900s, one of the ingredients was cocaine. At that time, it was sold as a patent medicine. It was promoted as a temperance drink offering the virtues of coca without the vices of alcohol. The new beverage was described as "invigorating and popular." I bet.

In the United States, cocaine was sold over-the-counter until 1914. It was widely used in tonics, toothache cures, patent medicines, and chocolate cocaine tablets. Prospective buyers were advised (in the words of pharmaceutical firm Parke-Davis) that cocaine "could make the coward brave, the silent eloquent, and render the sufferer insensitive to pain."

Personally, I think selling products that contain addictive substances is probably a good business decision. You don't have to worry about getting new customers, just keep people coming back because it has become a habit.

I was thinking about this as I waited in the drive through at Starbucks. I could make coffee at home, I even have an espresso machine. But everyday, I wait in line for my latte because they just taste so good.

Barbara Bartlein is the People Pro. Do you have a story about an irritating or negative person? Submit your Energy Sucker story at The People Pro.

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