Caffeine Content in Food Products

Caffeine content in food products

How much caffeine there is in a cup of coffee depends on many factors including: how big the cup, how finely the coffee is ground, how dark the roast, the brewing method used, how much coffee is used to make the drink and the type of coffee bean used.

The beans of Arabica coffee, grown at higher altitudes contain less caffeine than Robusta beans.

With tea, the amount used, how long it is allowed to brew and the type of tea – Indian (more caffeine) or China – also makes a difference. Tea actually contains more caffeine than coffee on a `dry weight’ basis, but a smaller weight of tea is generally used to prepare a drink.

Caffeine added to a food or drink must, by law, be included in the ingredients list. This does not apply to caffeine occurring naturally in foods (as in coffee). Although there is no statutory limit for caffeine in soft drinks, its use is subject to the general provisions of the Food Safety Act 1990.

Some products contain guarana, a natural plant product from Brazil that contains a substance – guaranine – that is identical to caffeine. It has exactly the same stimulant effect as caffeine from other sources, as does mateine, contained in Maté, a drink popular in South American countries, especially Argentina.

Table of caffeine content


Caffeine Content

Average mug of instant coffee 100mg caffeine
Average mug of filter coffee 140mg caffeine
Average mug of tea 75mg caffeine
Regular cola drink up to 40mg caffeine
Regular energy drink up to 80mg caffeine
Plain chocolate bar up to 50mg caffeine – milk chocolate has around 50% caffeine content of plain

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