WASHINGTON UPDATE*

Hurricane Durbin

A Category 5 storm of tyranny threatens to decimate our health freedom.

September 2011

Health tyranny just received a perfect storm in the form of Senator Dick Durbin and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Yet again, they’re teaming up to attack health freedom—and if they succeed, they could take away your dietary supplements forever. The double-pronged attack on your right to use supplements takes the form of FDA guidelines on new dietary ingredients and a destructive bill that Dick Durbin has introduced to Congress.

New FDA guidelines on New Dietary Ingredients (NDIs) require supplement manufacturers to report any changes in solvents, any changes in agricultural or fermentation conditions and other common manufacturing changes to existing ingredients.

Building on these new NDI guidelines, Durbin has now introduced a bill, S. 1310, the Dietary Supplement Labeling Act of 2011. According to S. 1310, every NDI must go through an exhaustive application process. But what falls under the umbrella of new dietary ingredients? More than you might expect. In every product that is manufactured or sold, any change in serving size, changes in marketing strategy for the product or changes in manufacturing techniques that alter any ingredient particle in any way must be documented and submitted.

Further, an NDI application must be submitted for every ingredient in the supplement—a multivitamin might require dozens of pages of applications. Worse, the FDA won’t accept electronic applications. This means reams upon reams of applications must be handled the old-fashioned way: filled out and routed through postal snail mail. Imagine the time and energy wasted. Additionally, when a company submits an NDI to the FDA (a frequent occurrence, to say the least) they will be forced to remove their product from interstate commerce for 75 days. Manufacturers will lose countless sales and consumers will lose access to their favorite products.

Durbin’s Battle Strategy

Senator Durbin’s attempts to usurp the supplement industry, and ultimately our health freedom, are consistent with his past underhanded trickery. This time, Durbin is trying to enforce an impossible set of hurdles for distributors and manufacturers to follow. Should S. 1310 pass, supplement companies will be up to their knees in mindless, costly busy work, draining their resources, killing their budgets and distracting them from their real purpose: Creating health-enhancing formulas that help the public. For consumers, this could mean outrageous prices due to a lack of competition, or a total discontinuation of the products that have always kept them healthy.

Durbin’s bill may also empower the government to vilify nutritional ingredients and pull products from shelves. S. 1310 contains language that suggests the FDA may create a blacklist of ingredients that “could cause potentially serious adverse events,” which would then be detailed in ominous warning labels on products. This could poison consumers’ minds against safe, natural dietary supplements, and even topple supplement manufacturers by destroying their reputations for quality.

Consider the vague, open-ended nature of Durbin’s language: By targeting ingredients that “could” cause “potential” events, Durbin is effectively talking about every ingredient under the sun! Since dietary supplements have a legendary track record of safety, all our enemies can do is grasp at straws and attack the potential for supplement danger. We cannot—will not—allow this smear campaign to succeed.

Spread the word! If S. 1310 is passed it could destroy the supplement industry and make it near impossible for you to get the supplements you love. It’s time to get involved! Visit www.nha2011.com for more information on health freedom. Then contact your local Congressperson today and demand an end to S. 1310!

 

*This editorial is a public service announcement sponsored by the Nutritional Health Alliance (NHA).

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