SOS for supplements

September 15, 2007

Many different supplements are on the market nowdays

Many different supplements are on the market nowdays

Your ability to freely choose and use natural medicines and supplements has been attacked on various fronts over the past few years. Campaigns have been ongoing to save specific supplements, or dosages, and now Consumers for Health Choice (CHC) are diving in with a campaign to Save Our Supplements by first targeting Gordon Brown and the new minister for health, Dawn Primarolo, by starting with a full page ad in The Guardian on the opening day of the Labour Party Conference on September 24th 2007. This ad will be an open letter to the Prime Minister and a further letter will be sent to the President of the European Commission, Jose Barroso as well as being placed in European journals in 12 countries to bring pressure on the commission to safeguard the future of consumer choice in the area of natural medicines and supplements.

Over 300 nutrients and nutrient sources that are already on the UK market, and accepted as safe by the regulators, are not included on the ‘Positive Lists’ the EU will accept and in order to get on the list it is estimated a manufacturer will have to submit a dossier of information that is estimated to cost around £250,000 per substance. This is obviously completely out of the range of the many small herbal companies that have been in existence for many years and it is anticipated that only 20 dossiers are expected to be submitted. One of the main areas of concern is over what the EU can set as maximum dosage for vitamins and minerals and these levels are likely to be extremely low. it will be illegal to market supplements which contain higher levels than these even though such levels have already been established through long usage as being safe. There has been substantial pressure from the pharmaceutical lobby and from the French and German Governments, to only allow low dose supplements and this would inevitably mean that a great many safe, popular and effective higher potency supplements will removed from the UK market. If you are a member of the Women’s Institute, you will be hearing more about this as CHC Director Sue Croft is in talks with the WI to encourage their 211,000 members to lend their support to the campaign. The WI has over 6,800 groups nationwide and is committed to improving the nations health through diet, so they would make ideal campaign partners.

More information on how to help, or if you wish to make a contribution to the campaign from the website at


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