Tue, 26 May 2009 17:02 UTC
The ban started after routine food safety tests conducted by authorities in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia found 0.5 micrograms of coca leaf extracts per liter in the drink.
According to the analysis, each can of the drink should contain 0.13 micrograms of cocaine, which does not pose a serious health threat. One has to drink 12,000 liters of Red Bull Cola to feel the negative affects. However, the variation from the analysis was enough to cause concern.
Officials said the cocaine level was too low to pose a health risk.
Red Bull Cola has protested the action, insisting the extract of coca leaf is used worldwide in foods as a natural flavoring. Red Bull said its cola is "harmless and marketable in both the US and Europe."
Germany's Federal Institute for Risk Assessment plans to issue a more detailed report Wednesday.
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