Bournvita not 'health drink': Centre directs e-commerce platforms to remove beverage from category

NCPCR found that Bournvita contains sugar levels much above the acceptable limits

Bournvita | Instagram Bournvita shouldn't be sold under 'health drinks' category, govt tells e-commerce sites | Instagram

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry has directed e-commerce companies to remove items such as Bournvita from the category of "health drinks" on their platforms. According to reports, the ministry released the advisory after an investigation by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) found that Bournvita contains sugar levels much above the acceptable limits.

The development comes a month after NCPCR chief Priyank Kanoogoo had shot a letter to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry citing the need the instruct e-commerce portals of the need to remove such drinks and beverages from the health drinks category. Copies of the letter were also forwarded to the Health and Electronics and Information Technology ministries as well, Times Of India (TOI) said in a report.

"National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), a statutory body constituted under Section (3) of the Commission of Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005 after its inquiry under Section 14 of CRPC Act 2005 concluded that there is no 'health drink' defined under FSS Act 2006, rules and regulations submitted by FSSAI and Mondelez India Food Pvt Ltd," a notification by the ministry dated April 10 read.

The controversy over the 'unhealthy' nature of Bournvita first arose after a YouTuber in his video slammed the powder supplement and informed that it contained excessive sugar, cocoa solids and harmful colourants that could lead to serious health hazards in children, including cancer, news agency IANS said.

Notably, as per the regulatory body, 'health drink' has not been defined in the country's food laws and to project something under the same violates the rules. The FSSAI, earlier this month, also instructed e-commerce portals against labelling diary-based or malt-based beverages as 'health drinks'.

Join our WhatsApp Channel to get the latest news, exclusives and videos on WhatsApp