Update on EU herbal remedies licensing
February 2, 2011
Since looking into the proposed legislation for herbal remedies, I’ve always felt that ‘ban’ is the wrong language to use. On the 15th January, BBC News referred to this legislation as a ‘licensing rule’, which is far more accurate description.
Here is a snippet of the original article by Nigel Cassidy.
The EU directive aims to protect users from any damaging side-effects that can arise from taking unsuitable medicines. Only high quality, long-established and scientifically safe herbal medicines will be sold over the counter. Some traders who sell products imported from outside the EU say their business will be hit.
“The new rules are very much in favour of large companies. It is the loss of freedom of choice which worries me. We also expect massive price increases because of the cost of compliance.”
However, the regulator of all these pills and potions says the aim is to protect consumers, not to pick off small suppliers.
Professor David Colquhoun, professor of pharmacology at University College London, said the changes were of limited value because the rules did not require makers to show any evidence of whether the newly licensed products were effective.