EU regulations on herbal medicines come into force

April 29th, 2011, new European Union rules come into force banning hundreds of traditional herbal remedies.

BBC News/Health.

I hope that the Government of Canada adopts the new European Union rules to:

  • Ensure consumer safety from deleterious materials that may be present in these medicine and not mentioned on the ingredient list
  • Protect the consumer from the risk of interference of Chinese medicine with the Western medicine patients are using
  • Ensure what medicine labels claim are accurate
  • Make sure that these herbs have undergone the tests Western medicine are required to pass before being introduced to the consumer

When herbal medicines were introduced to the consumer in Canada, they were backed by a powerful advertising campaign that led the public to believe that these medicines offer what we can not find in conventional western medicine. The manufacturers claimed whatever they wanted to sell their products and we did not have any authority to validate their claims. Many of these herbs was proven ineffective at best. Others were very harmful and contained many toxic heavy metals that led to banning in Canada.

When the issue of sales control of herbal medicine was raised in the Canadian Parliament (Bill C-36), it was politicized and a huge public campaign was launched by the vendors and their association to prevent the Parliament from passing these rules. But it was not for the benefit of the consumer as the new European regulations show.