Taurine In Red Bull Are Not Made From The Sperms Of Bull. The Viral Claim Is False

Consumer Misinformation Consumer Safety Fact Check False

The demand for energy drinks in the market is increasing and people are consuming these everyday. But what will be your reaction, if you will be told that these energy drinks are adulterated? 

A social media post claiming that Red Bull energy drinks really contain bull’s sperm is currently viral. A user wrote,”Every since I read there was bull sperm in Red Bulls I just can’t bring myself to drink one, why y’all be drinking that”

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The same claim was also viral on social media in 2023. The user wrote that Red Bull energy drinks contain the sperm of bulls, that’s the reason for the logo with two red colored bulls. The post had few images. In one of the images, a bull’s genitals can be seen strapped. Another image with Red Bull energy drink has Taurine circled on it. 

Fact Check- 

We found that the same claim was viral on social media in 2015 as well. From this it is clear that this is an old claim which keeps resurfacing from time to time. Below you can see the post. 

Further, we found a clarification from Red Bull on their website. The company said on their website that their production sites are located in the Austrian and Swiss Alps, where fresh water of highest quality is sourced from springs nearby. It uses locally sourced water at their production and filling sites. Sugar used in the product is produced from sugar beet. Other ingredients like taurine, caffeine and vitamins are synthetically produced and comply with food regulatory requirements. 

You can see the list of ingredients and a brief about each here.

Replying to whether the taurine is made from bull’s testicles, Red Bull clarified that the taurine used in their products is not derived from animals. It is produced synthetically by pharmaceutical companies. 

In an article published on People for Ethical Treatment of Animal’s (PETA) website in 2015, tagged Red Bull as a vegan drink. However, it did not include Red Bull in its list of energy drinks as the company supported tests on animals which PETA found to be unnecessary and cruel and not required by law. 

How is taurine synthesized? 

As per the information on News Medical website, Taurine is made naturally in the human body, mainly in the pancreas, through a process called the cysteine sulfinic acid pathway. In this process, a part of the cysteine molecule is changed to form cysteine sulfinic acid. This cysteine sulfinic acid then loses a carbon dioxide molecule to become hypotaurine, which finally turns into taurine.

As consumer demand for taurine has increased, the commercial production of the substance has started by the process of chemical synthesis. One common method involves reacting ethylene oxide with sodium bisulfite to create isethionic acid, which is then used to make synthetic taurine. Another method uses a single reaction between aziridine and sulfurous acid to produce taurine.

Taurine is often added to energy drinks because it can help improve muscle function and physical performance. While people usually get about 58 mg of taurine from their diet each day, energy drinks can have 1000-2000 mg in each serving. Some people drink more than one serving a day, which has raised concerns among health experts and led to more research. Generally, taking up to 3000 mg of taurine per day is considered safe, and side effects are rare. However, the long-term effects are not well known.

The process of the manufacturing of Taurine was also patented which was found on Google Patents. According to the information, most taurine is produced from ethylene oxide, following a three-step process: (1) the addition reaction of ethylene oxide with sodium bisulfite to yield sodium isethionate; (2) the ammonolysis of sodium isethionate to yield sodium taurinate; (3) the neutralization with an acid, i.e., hydrochloric acid and, preferably, sulfuric acid, to generate taurine and inorganic salts. Although the ethylene oxide process is well established and widely practiced in commercial production, the overall yield is not very high, less than 80%. Moreover, the process generates a large waste stream that is increasingly difficult to dispose of.

Conclusion

Fact Crescendo found the claim to be false. Red Bull does not use taurine made from bull’s semen in its products. The taurine used in Red Bull is manufactured synthetically by pharmaceutical companies. PETA also categorizes Red Bull as a vegan product. 

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Title:Taurine in Red Bull are not made from the sperms of bull. No. The viral claim is false

Written By: Siddharth Sahu 

Result: False

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