- Red Bull is the brand name of an energy drink that originated in Thailand and, in a version adapted to Austrian tastes, is now popular throughout the world. Sold by Red Bull GmbH as an energy drink to combat mental and physical fatigue, it contains, per 250 ml (8.3 U.S. fl. oz.) serving, about 27 g of sugar 1000 mg of taurine, 600 mg of glucuronolactone, B-complex vitamins and 80 mg of caffeine. The caffeine in one serving is less than that found in an average cup of coffee or twice as much as found in a can of Coke.
The drink is intended to taste like mixed berries, and is commonly used as mixer in alcoholic drinks such as vodka and is the base ingredient in the now famous Jagerbomb and Remytini.
The original Red Bull drink was developed in Thailand by the company TC Pharmaceutical, where it was sold under the Thai name "Krating Daeng". The recipe was based on Lipovitan, an earlier energy drink that had been introduced to Thailand from Japan. Krating Daeng sales soared across Asia in the 1970s and 1980s, especially among truck drivers, construction workers and farmers. Truck drivers used to drink it to stay awake during the long late night drive.
The working class image was boosted by sponsorship of Thai boxing matches, where the logo of two red bulls charging each other was often on display.
The Thai product was transformed into a global brand by Dietrich Mateschitz, an Austrian entrepreneur. Mateschitz was international marketing director for Blendax, a German toothpaste company, when he visited Thailand in 1982 and (reportedly) discovered that Krating Daeng helped to cure his jet lag. Between 1984 and 1987, Mateschitz worked with TC Pharmaceutical (a Blendax licensee) to adapt Krating Daeng for European audiences. In 1987, it was launched in Austria, making it's European debut. And as they say, the rest is history.