Commerce Ministry Reclassifies Bournvita, Excludes it from Health Drink Category


New Delhi: In a significant move, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has directed e-commerce platforms to reclassify Bournvita and similar beverages, removing them from the ‘health drink’ category. This decision comes as part of a broader initiative to ensure accurate product descriptions and consumer safety.

Behind the Decision:
The directive follows an intervention by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), which is responsible for the protection of child rights under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights Act. The NCPCR’s investigation found that Bournvita, among other products, does not conform to the food regulations as previously classified.

Impact on Energy Drinks:
This is not the first time the government has taken action against misclassified beverages. Previously, juices and drinks labeled as ‘health’ and ‘energy’ drinks were also removed from e-commerce sites due to misleading segments. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has been actively involved in ensuring that dairy, grain, and malt-based beverages are not sold under the guise of health or energy drinks.

Consumer Misdirection and Health Concerns:
The mislabeling of products has led to confusion among consumers, particularly affecting the youth who frequently consume energy drinks. There has been a reported 50% annual increase in the consumption of these drinks, often by gym-goers seeking health benefits. The reclassification aims to prevent such misunderstandings and protect consumers from potential health risks associated with these beverages.


Government’s Stance on Accurate Labeling:
The Ministry’s notification is a clear indication of the government’s commitment to precise product categorization and the well-being of its citizens. By enforcing these regulations, the Ministry seeks to uphold the integrity of product labeling and ensure that consumers are not misled by inaccurate health claims.