MEDIA STATEMENT  

8 October 2014

Changed labelling on sports drinks minimal for Australian consumers

The Australian Beverages Council today reiterated that proposed changes by Food Standards Australia and New Zealand to labelling on sports drinks are minimal and will bring Australia more in line with the rest of the world when it comes to sports drinks regulation.

“This is not about easing restrictions or misguiding consumers, in fact it is quite the opposite.  This is merely a classification change that ensures the claims made by sports drinks manufacturers are scientifically substantiated,” said the Council’s CEO, Geoff Parker.

“Sports drinks (also known as Electrolyte drinks) are designed specifically for the rapid replacement of fluid, carbohydrates, and electrolytes. They are of most benefit for athletes and active members of the public to aid in rehydration. Sugar is an essential part of the functional benefits of sports drink following intense exercise.”

Mr Parker said he was confident consumers would not buy unsuitable products as a result of the new claims.

“Having scientifically substantiated claims clearly stated on the labels we hope will further assist consumers in making sure that particular types of drinks are right for them.”

“It’s something the industry is very open about – that these types of sports drinks are absolutely for people who engage in intensive exercise,” he said.

“These drinks are not suitable for a kids’ swimming carnival, when the eight-year-old only has to swim 25 metres. In most instances, water is absolutely the best drink for them,” Mr Parker said.

Media contact: Geoff Parker – Chief Executive Officer, Australian Beverages Council , 0407 646 195

The Australian Beverages Council is the peak body for the non-alcoholic beverages industry and represents 95% of the industry’s production volume through membership.

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