According to California Senate Bill 39
, there is a new law that starts January 1, 2012 that states "... the import, production, manufacture, distribution, or sale of beer to which caffeine has been directly added as a separate ingredient at retail locations within the state" is prohibited.
Does this mean that beers infused with coffee will no longer be able to be brewed or bought/sold in California? To me, no (not yet), since the caffeine is not being added directly as caffeine, but only as an adjunct from the coffee itself. Is this the case or is any beer containing caffeine now going to be banned?
The problem that I think will be pressing (as with every other stupid law that gets enacted) is when the courts start determining what the phrase"... to which caffeine has been directly added as a separate ingredient..." means. How about chocolate in beer?
When do the legislators then start determining maximum limits of caffeine in beer? Is it 100 ppm, 500 ppm, 1000 ppm or some other arbitrary amount? Slippery slope starting right here.