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Hot Topic – Renewal of beverage registrations

According to a recent decision¹ issued by the 1st Federal Court of Assis, São Paulo, the mere fact that an ingredient is not included in the Brazilian Health Regulatory Agency (“Anvisa”)’s regulations, without confirmation of potential health damage, cannot be considered an obstacle to the renewal of beverage registrations.

In this case, a beverage company filed a lawsuit against the Union, after the Federal Superintendence of Agriculture conditioned the renewal of registrations to the removal of the ingredient “catuaba” from four of its products, arguing that the component was not listed in the latest edition of the Brazilian Pharmacopoeia and, therefore, was no longer regulated by Anvisa.

Due to the lack of technical grounds for the prohibition, the court held that the administrative act that rejected the use of said ingredient would violate the constitutional principle of free competition. Consequently, the Court determined the renewal of the registrations for beverages composed by the extract of catuaba, as well as the maintenance of production and commercialization of the products, provided that all other technical and scientific requirements were met.

The decision is subject to review by the Federal Court of Appeals.