SEOUL: South Korea is banning the sale of coffee at all elementary, middle and high schools from Sep 14, in a bid to promote healthy eating habits, according to media reports.
The ban will affect both students and teachers.
Under the country's current laws, products that are high in calories or caffeine, or low in nutrition, are already restricted or banned in schools. However, coffee remains available for teachers via vending machines and snack shops.
Under the revised law, all coffee products will be made unavailable, even for teachers.
"The revision aims to create healthy eating habits among children and teenagers," an official from South Korea's Ministry of Food and Drug Safety said. "We will make sure coffee is banned at schools without fail."
The official added: "We have notified schools of the coffee ban across the nation through cooperation with the education ministry."
The ministry had said that consuming too much caffeine can cause dizziness, a rapid heartbeat, sleep disorders or nervousness, and can harm a child's physical and mental health if consumed continuously, The Korea Times reported.
Citing a 2015 research by the ministry, the report said that coffee contains the highest amount of caffeine with 449.1 milligrammes per kilogramme. Chocolate milk, by comparison, contains 277.5 milligrammes per kilogramme.
The Daily Telegraph had reported that more than 26 billion cups of coffee were served to South Koreans in 2017. This means that an average of 512 cups of coffee were consumed per person.