FSSAI issues order on usage of the term “ORS” along with brand name.

LegalitySimplified

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India on 14th July 2022, has directed the Food Business Operators (FBO) 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 ‘or the FBOs may use similar meaning phrases without changing the intent.

FSSAI has earlier issued direction regarding misleading advertisement and marketing of ORS substitute products vide which the use of terms ‘ORS’ or similar to ‘oRS’, and/or depiction of the food products as ‘ORS’on the food labels or through advertisement was restricted and the Commissioners of Food Safety of all States/UTs and Central licensing Authorities were advised to issue improvement notices to such FBOs for rectification of such food labels.

However it has been notified that few FBOs are valid trademarks similar to the term’0RS’for the name of their products, and as a consequence the matter has already been taken up with the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks, Mumbai (CGPDTM) with the request to review such trademarks as per the provisions of the Trade Marks Act’ 1999 and inform FSSAI so that further action in the matter may be taken.

Considering that the FBOs have valid trademarks granted under the Trade Marks Act, FSSAI has decided to allow those FBOs with valid trademark to manufacture such products under their respective Trademarked names till the decision of the CGPDTM is received.

Further, for FBOs who are presently manufacturing such products but have not trademarked the same before the date of this order shall discontinue the same. Such FBOs shall be required to submit an undertaking to this effect to FSSAI, HQs, after which they shall be provided six months’ time from the date of this direction to exhaust the existing stock/inventory of such products in the market along with the pre-printed packaging material.

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