The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India’s (FSSAI) new proposal regarding new juice-based fizzy drinks could potentially help companies launch new products in this specific category. The new proposal calls for relaxation of norms for the required amount of juice content in all carbonated juice-based beverages. According to officials at Coca-Cola and PepsiCo, speaking to Economic Times regarding the increase in product launches, this new proposal will help increase the lagging sales numbers for soft drinks in the coming months.
The new proposal amends the existing rules from FSSAI which required a minimum of 10% fruit juice or pulp content to qualify as a juice drink. Speaking to Economic Times, an official from one of the beverage makers noted that “The industry has been growing in low single digits; this draft notification, if implemented, will help us in innovation and hopefully, spur consumer demand for functional drinks.” The proposal from FSSAI also calls from beverage makers to classify their products as “carbonated beverage with fruit juice if the beverage contains less than “10 per cent but not less than 5 per cent (2.5 per cent in case of lime or lemon)” quantity of fruit juice. The quantity of fruit juice should also be clearly labeled on the product label, according to the new proposal.
Fruit Juice in Carbonated Drinks
Earlier this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for an addition of 2 percent of fruit juice in all aerated products. The idea was suggested to leading beverage makers in the country as a means to help increase the produce acquirement for local farmers, giving them an extra source of income. Although, in theory, the proposal seems to have been suggested to improve farmers’ quality of life, companies are facing a difficult time implementing the proposal. “Existing guidelines make it impossible to implement the 2 per cent norm because adding the juice would add to costs and require more preservatives to increase shelf life of the products.”
Sales of soft drinks in India has continued to dwindle due to an increase in the health conscious population in the country. With research and studies showing the ill-effects of consuming sugary drinks, more people are gravitating towards healthy juice product brands such as Raw Pressery, a cold-pressed juice-maker in India. This new proposal could potentially lead to aerated beverage makers like Coca-Cola and Pespico to launch new products to entice customers into buying products which could serve as an alternative to their products already on the market.