#052: The End of Natural Health Products?


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by Brett Hawes

Lawyer and president of the Natural Health Products Protection Association (NHPPA), Shawn Buckley joins me today. The NHPPA is a non-profit activist organization with the sole objective of protecting access to Natural Health Products (NHP’s) and Dietary Supplements. 

Today we discuss the pressing issue of restriction of access to NHP’s. Of particular interest  are the new proposed guidelines by Health Canada to regulate NHP’s under the “Self-Care Products” framework. Health Canada has plans to implement changes to Natural Health Product Regulations, including:

  • Grouping NHPs and over-the-counter drugs into the same system regardless of their obvious differences and a 20-year history of Canadians staunchly opposing increased regulation of NHPs
  • Extremely limited options for label claims on NHP’s
  • Censorship of many types of scientific evidence
  • Standards of evidence for Natural Health Products will be consolidated under the costly chemical drug model, despite the exponentially lower risk profile
  • NHP’s will be subject to recall without court supervision
  • New Health Canada powers to fine companies up to $5,000,000 per day without court oversight
  • Individuals can be personally charged along with Corporations, Directors and Officers

How will this affect you?

  • Increased costs of NHPs, making them less accessible to the majority of Canadians
  • Elimination of many more natural products from the Canadian market
  • Only the most basic natural health products will have approval
  • Loss of innovative and higher potency products, leading to poorer efficacy and a reduced ability to treat and support patients/clients
  • Extremely limited label claims, including no marketing for specific serious health conditions
  • Great individual risk to educate on the use of NHPs outside the generalized label claims
  • Traditional medicine practitioners such as First Nations, Homeopathic, Herbal, Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners will have decreased access to remedies on which they rely due to changes in acceptable label claims

What can you do: 

Visit the NHPPA website and take action to protect access to Natural Health Products

Read Shawn’s discussion paper on the matter

Bio: Shawn Buckley is a lawyer with decades of experience dealing with Health Canada to keep natural products available. He has been called as an expert witness in both the House of Commons and the Senate in the areas of natural health product regulation and constitutional rights. Mr. Buckley is also President of the Natural Health Products Protection Association (NHPPA), a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting our right to choose remedies without undue government interference. Mr. Buckley is well known for his engaging lectures, which challenge the listener with shocking stories from the Health Canada trenches.


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