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FSSAI Cracks Down on Energy Drink Companies for Using 'ORS' with Brand Name

The product "ORS" is classified as a medication under Drugs and Cosmetics Rules L945 and is used to treat severe diarrhoea. The Drugs Controller General of India has prescribed a particular composition for the product (DCGI).

Sandeep Kr Tiwari
The product "ORS" is classified as a medication under Drugs and Cosmetics Rules L945 and is used to treat severe diarrhoea.
The product "ORS" is classified as a medication under Drugs and Cosmetics Rules L945 and is used to treat severe diarrhoea.

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has ordered businesses that produce energy drinks to clearly state that their goods are "not an ORS as advised by the WHO" if their trademarks are similar to the term "ORS" (oral rehydration salts).

The Delhi High Court ordered the Ministry of Health to strictly enforce the prohibition on the use of the word "ORS" in August.

Following this, in April, the primary food authority became aware of the deceptive advertising used by energy drink manufacturers to promote their products as alternatives to ORS.

The product "ORS" is classified as a medication under Drugs and Cosmetics Rules L945 and is used to treat severe diarrhoea. The Drugs Controller General of India has prescribed a particular composition for the product (DCGI).

According to the official, "the marketing and labelling of the fruit-based beverages, etc. under the name of ORS is not only deceptive for ordinary consumers, but it is also harmful to the patients who may consume such products as ORS, especially in the case of children suffering from diseases like diarrhoea, gastroenteritis, etc., may have serious health repercussions.

The official order issued by FSSAI on July 14 said that businesses with "valid trademarks similar to the term 'ORS' are further directed to provide a prominent declaration on their front-of-pack, either through non-detachable stickers or printing, that the product is NOT an ORS formula as recommended by WHO. Alternatively, FBOs may use similar meaning phrases without changing the intent.

Additionally, FBOs that are currently manufacturing such products but have not trademarked them before the date of this order shall discontinue the same.

After submitting an undertaking to this effect to FSSAI HQs, such FBOs will have six months from the date of this directive to use up all of the pre-printed packaging material and current stock/inventory of such products on the market.

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