CRN head counters attacks on industry

MCLEAN, Va USA Today opinion piece published last month regarding a Consumer Reports attack on the dietary supplement industry. —The Council for Responsible Nutrition’s president and CEO Steve Mister supplied the “opposing view” to a

At issue was the public misconception that dietary supplements are unregulated. “While many users believe that sale of unsafe or ineffective supplements must be illegal, it is not,” USA Today opined, citing Consumer Reports. “The public has little protection from useless, fraudulent, dangerous or even deadly products, thanks to special protection Congress gave the industry in 1994.”

“Truth is, the Food and Drug Administration already has ample authority to regulate this industry,” Mister countered. Opinions of regulation aside, Consumer Reports had outlined problems with a dozen considered-to-be-dangerous herbal supplements—none of which would make any mass retailer’s best-seller list.

“The media circus surrounding the latest issue of Consumer Reports implicates the entire aisle of mainstream dietary supplements based on 12 ingredients that, combined, make up less than 1% of the marketplace,” Mister noted. “Yet given the attention, one would think these 12 herbs represent the mainstream dietary supplement aisle at your neighborhood pharmacy. They do not.” Mister added, “If any of these 12 ingredients is truly unsafe, then the FDA should ban its use.”

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