Italy is being taken to the European Court of Justice by the European Commission over its regulations governing sports nutrition products, reports nutraingredients.com.

Italian regulations state that any product intended for intense muscular effort must obtain prior authorisation.

As this rule applies both to products made in Italy and imports from other Member States, this contravenes EU rules on free trade. According to the Maastricht Treaty, products lawfully manufacture red or distributed in one Member State must enjoy freedom of movement in other Member States. As such, the 'prior authorisation' rule introduced by the Italian government poses a barrier to free trade.