The U.S. Food and Drug Administration plans to investigate whether inhalable caffeine sold in lipstick-sized containers is safe for consumers and if it is right to brand it as a dietary supplement.
AeroShot, invented by Harvard biomedical engineering professor David Edwards, went on the market late last month in Massachusetts and New York, and is also available in France. Users place one end of the canister in their month and breathe in, releasing a fine powder that dissolves almost instantly, according to the Associated Press.
The grey-and-yellow canisters contain B vitamins and 100 milligrams of caffeine powder – about the equivalent caffeine as a large cup of coffee.
AeroShot didn’t require FDA review before becoming available in the U.S. because it’s sold as a dietary supplement.
“We need to make sure that AeroShot does not become the next Four Loko,” New York’s U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer said in a statement. “By facilitating dangerous levels of drinking among teenagers and college students.”
Edwards, the creator, said the product is safe and doesn’t contain taurine and other common additives used to enhance the caffeine effect in energy drinks.
However, the FDA will review the product to determine if it qualifies as a dietary supplement as well as testing to figure out if it is actually safe for consumption.