Although there was hope that Maggi will be back in the markets after it cleared certain tests, the trouble does not seem to end for the instant noodle brand. Now, Maggi faces a Rs 640 crore lawsuit in a consumer court for unfair trade practices, regarding MSG content.
In its petition, the Department of Consumer Affairs has alleged that Nestle India had “indulged in unfair trade practices by false labelling of Maggi Noodles in as much as it states ‘No added MSG’ prominently on packet, despite presence of MSG.”
Owing to the presence of MSG, the petition pulled up Maggi for selling “defective” goods to consumers. A bench of National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) directed that the samples be sent to Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysore, after verifying the seal and samples, and a report has been sought within four weeks.
The complaint said, “This commission be pleased to direct the opponent company to remove ‘No added MSG’ from the packets and labels of all the variants of Maggi noodles.”
In its defence, Maggi has stated that “We have received test results from all three laboratories mandated by the hon’ble Bombay high court to test Maggi Noodles samples. All the 90 samples, covering six variants, tested by these laboratories are clear with lead much below the permissible limits,” although the results of tests on 13 samples ordered by the apex court, will only arrive in the next four weeks.
While Maggi is still grappling with numerous legal challenges on its way back to market domination, Patanjali Ayurveda has already arrived with its own version of the two minute noodles . According to Patanjali founder and yoga guru Baba Ramdev, the noodles with the tagline “jhat pat pakao, aur befikr khao” , will not contain any MSG.
Baba Ramdev introduced the noodles which will cost only Rs 15, saying, “We are working on the principles of swadeshi , where we work for the betterment and health of the country.”
As the competition seems tougher, the increasing number of obstacles are proving to be a threat to Maggi’s ambitious come back.