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High-caffeine drinks may be banned from school stores

The Korea Food and Drug Administration has drafted new guidelines for children’s food safety under which high caffeine energy drinks such as Hot Six and Red Bull may be banned from school stores and areas around schools.

The agency on Thursday unveiled a set of nutrition management guides for children’s snacks and school lunches.

According to the plan, schools stores will be banned from selling beverages containing over 0.15mg of caffeine per 1ml.

The “Children’s Food Safety Protection Zone,” initially 200 meters from schools, would also be expanded to include private institutes and playground areas, the authorities proposed.

Seven new snack items will be added to the “high-calorie, low nutrition food” category banned in such areas.

High-caffeine energy drinks are currently classified as soda and are not yet obligated to state the amount of caffeine they contain.

Statistics also showed that 39.6 percent of 5,405 middle and high school students drank energy drinks within the past month to stay awake.

In response, Rep. Choi Dong-ic from the Democratic United Party proposed a bill in August banning the sale of energy drinks in school zones.

By Sang Youn-joo, Intern reporter