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Cocaine Traces Found in Red Bull in Hong Kong

Hong Kong officials said they found traces of cocaine in cans of energy drink Red Bull, Agence France Press reported Tuesday.

The discovery comes days after Taiwanese officials confiscated 18,000 cans of Red Bull.

Officials at the Centre for Food Safety said a laboratory analysis found tiny amounts of the illegal drug in samples of "Red Bull Cola," "Red Bull Sugar-free" and "Red Bull Energy Drink", a spokesman told AFP.

Hong Kong has pulled the drink from major supermarkets.

The company responded with a strong denial that traces of the illegal drug had been found.

"It would have been absolutely impossible for Asian (or any other) authorities to have found traces of cocaine in Red Bull Energy Drink," the company said in a statement. "We believe that Asian authorities mistakenly applied concerns about Red Bull Simply Cola to Red Bull Energy Drink, a completely different product with an entirely different formula."

"Nevertheless, we had Red Bull Energy Drink product samples from Asia analyzed by an independent and accredited institute and confirmed that Red Bull Energy Drink does not contain any cocaine," the company said.

Last week, Austria's health ministry said it found traces of cocaine in samples of Red Bull Cola, but that the traces did not pose a health risk.

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