Beverage

Say goodbye to Panera's Charged Lemonades

The fast-casual chain confirmed the caffeinated drinks will be phased out, but did not specify the timing. The energy drinks have been blamed for two deaths.
warning label
Three caffeinated lemonades, which now have clear warning labels, will be replaced by an array of new beverage offerings. | Photo: Shutterstock.

The Charged Lemonade at Panera Bread will soon be axed from the menu.

Confirming reports that the caffeinated energy drinks will be phased out, a company spokesperson did not say when the drinks would be cut from the menu. But the move will be part of the ongoing menu transformation for the brand, which began in April.

The fast-casual chain’s Charged Lemonade has been blamed in at least three lawsuits, including two deaths.

In addition, an 18-year-old with no known heart issues reportedly went into cardiac arrest in March after consuming a large Charged Lemonade in Pennsylvania, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He survived, but spent six days in the hospital.

Panera added warning labels last year that clearly state the caffeine content in the beverages, noting they are not recommended for children, people sensitive to caffeine, pregnant or nursing women.

In a statement, the company did not comment on the reported health incidents, but said the beverage move is the result of listening to more than 30,000 guests about what they wanted from Panera, saying the menu transformation will “focus next on the broad array of beverages we know our guests desire—ranging from exciting, on-trend flavors, to low-sugar and low-caffeine options.”

Coming to the menu as part of an “enhanced beverage portfolio,” include the new Blueberry Lavender Lemonade, Pomegranate Hibiscus Tea, Citrus Punch and a Tropical Green Smoothie, for example, which the company said “will reinforce our mission of delivering what our guests want most—amazing taste, quality ingredients and value.”

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