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Repressing Health Rights and Alternative Medicine FDA Copies the European Union

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Health Issues page, Appetite For a Change page, and our Nutri-Con: The Truth About Vitamins & Supplements page.

Are the NDI guidelines the ultimate FDA tool to freeze dietary supplement innovation? A special report by Robert Verkerk, PhD, ANH-USA Scientific Director and ANH-Europe Executive and Scientific Director.

(Note: Once again, please do not forget our two related Action Alerts-one on the FDA's new NDI guidance, the other on the Durbin bill-in the last paragraph of this article. We are emphasizing these Action Alerts so strongly because the guidance and the bill could have a devastating effect on your natural health freedoms.)

If the US natural products industry values its ability to keep a diverse range of products available for the benefit of the American public, and believes in not exposing the public to unnecessary costs, we strongly suggest that it look very closely at the latest guidelines from the FDA-with eyes wide open. We refer to the FDA guidelines on so-called "new dietary ingredients" (NDIs) that we've been telling you about over the past several weeks. These guidelines preempt a crackdown on ingredients used in natural products, one that appears to be coordinated closely with a similar clampdown happening currently in Europe. The guidelines bear an uncanny likeness to the European Union's Novel Food Regulation.

The justification given for the new guidelines is-as is always the case when facing a tighter regulatory noose around dietary supplements-consumer safety. This of course brings about a predictable response from the natural health sector: "But where are the dead bodies?" It's actually quite a pertinent question, and one that is rarely taken seriously by the FDA or other regulators.