61. The Committee recalled that its last session had considered a proposal by South Africa to develop recommendations for "Sports Drinks" and "Energy Drinks" and requested guidance from the Commission on how to proceed in this area. The 22nd Session of the Commission agreed that for "sports" and "energy" drinks the major problem might relate to the claims made for such products and assigned the work to the CCFL, which should also coordinate its work with the Codex Committees on Food Additives and Contaminants and on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (ALINORM 97/37, para. 122).
62. The proposed draft Recommendations for Sports and Energy Drinks were presented to the Committee by the Delegation of South Africa, who stressed that the proposal was limited to the consideration of claims only, and did not refer to other aspects such as product composition. It was noted that such claims could be misleading to consumers and therefore that their terminology needed to be defined on a sound scientific basis.
63. The Committee discussed the need for further development of the Recommendations. Several delegations supported the consideration of guidelines as a claims issues without linkage of the claim to any particular product. The Delegation of Malaysia was of the opinion that Section 1.4 created confusion, and suggested the addition of other provisions under a new Section 2.8 to stipulate that sports drinks were not intended for consumption by infants or as replacement fluids. The Delegation of the United Kingdom expressed the opinion that there was a need to define only a limited number of claims, i.e. isotonic, hypertonic, hypotonic.
64. Other delegations were of the opinion that there was little difference between the energy content of sports and soft drinks and that in any case, nutritional requirements could be met by certain population groups (i.e., athletes) through a normal diet. It was suggested that if any recommendations related to sports drinks were proposed, they should be based on a demonstrated need to meet the requirements of certain population groups. For energy drinks, the appropriate level of energy should be defined by the CCNFSDU. It was also noted that any proposed food additive provisions for the products would be addressed by the Committee on Food Additives and Contaminants in the context of the General Standard for Food Additives. Some delegations expressed the view that it was not appropriate to include caffeine in sports drinks or electrolyte drinks. Some delegations expressed the opinion that the level of 0.05% of alcohol for "alcohol free" was excessively low, and that certain fruit juices could not meet these requirements. The Observer of IDF pointed out that milk ingredients were used in sports and energy drinks and that this would have to be taken into consideration in the further elaboration of the text.
Status of the Proposed Draft Recommendations for Sports and Energy Drinks
65. The Committee thanked South Africa for its efforts, and accepted their offer to redraft the document on the basis of the comments received and the above discussions, for circulation and further consideration at its next session. The Committee noted that the document might be submitted to the CCNFSDU for advice on the use of sports drinks to meet special dietary needs.