EuG dismisses German company Dextro Energy
(jur). Health-related advertising for food can also be prohibited if the statements are correct. So glucose is important for the energy metabolism, but health advertising should not call for more sugar, judged on Wednesday, March 16, 2016, the first instance court of the European Union (ECJ) in Luxembourg (ref .: T-100/15 ). It dismissed a lawsuit brought by Dextro Energy.
Health-related advertising for food is only permitted to a limited extent under EU law. Corresponding so-called health claims must be approved. They are recorded in a list and can then be used by all companies across the EU.
The German company Dextro Energy, based in Meerbusch near Neuss, made the corresponding applications in 2011. This involved statements such as "glucose contributes to normal energy metabolism" or "glucose supports physical activity".
The European Food Safety Authority EFSA had scientifically confirmed these statements. Other formal requirements for the health claims were also met.
Nevertheless, the EU Commission refused to grant approval. The advertising sends "a confusing signal to the consumer". Because she calls for sugar consumption, although a reduction in sugar consumption is generally recommended.
Dextro Energy's complaint was unsuccessful. As the CFI decided, a positive opinion by EFSA in particular is not binding for the EU Commission. The Commission should also take other relevant factors into account.
According to generally recognized health principles, consumers in Euroopa should indisputably reduce their sugar consumption, the Luxembourg judges emphasized. In contrast, the health claims applied for by Dextro Energy unilaterally highlighted the positive effects of glucose "without mentioning the dangers associated with eating more sugar". The Commission was right to rule that this was "ambiguous and misleading" and could therefore not be authorized.
Dextro Energy can appeal this judgment to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in Luxembourg. (mwo)