Last week, Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum filed a lawsuit against the makers of 5-hour ENERGY, alleging that the energy drink company violated the state’s unlawful business and trade practices law by making misleading advertising claims. The lawsuit, echoed by similar suits in Washington and Vermont, claims that 5-hour ENERGY falsely touts that a mix of ingredients including Vitamin B6, B12, and folic acid contributes to heightened energy, when the only active ingredient in the product is caffeine. In a statement sent to OPB, 5-hour ENERGY responded, “The suits allege that the only ingredient in 5-hour ENERGY that has any effect is the caffeine. If so, are the Attorneys General going to sue Starbucks for selling coffee?”
The attorneys general are also suing the company for stating that users will feel no sugar crash, and for irresponsibly marketing the product to teens 12 and older. Oregon was part of a 33-state group that demanded data backing up 5-hour ENERGY’s advertising claims last year.
Do you drink 5-hour ENERGY? What’s your reaction to this lawsuit?
- Stephen Gardner: Director of litigation at the Center for Science in the Public Interest