Today, the Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA) announced its new lobby campaign to save the Natural Health and Organic Products industry, with the launch of its new website SaveOurNaturalHealthProducts.ca The overall objective of this campaign is to ensure that Canadians seeking optimal health and well-being will continue to have access and choice to innovative high quality natural and organic products.
Since the Natural Health Products (NHP) Regulations were implemented six years ago, the Natural Health and Organic products industry has worked hard to comply with over 38,000 product license applications submitted to the Natural Health Product Directorate (NHPD) of Health Canada. After five years, just over 13,000 applications have been approved for a license, almost 50% being refused or withdrawn.
With Health Canada’s deadline of April 2010 fast approaching, many of the natural health products currently being sold will not be licensed for sale, and the availability of new NHPs will be significantly reduced unless immediate improvements are made to the product licensing process. Without significant changes, the industry's revenues, profitability, and viability in Canada will be at risk.
The CHFA has launched this new campaign, encouraging its members to participate by contacting local Members of Parliament, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Health, urging Health Canada to work collaboratively with CHFA and its members to implement solutions that will ensure Canadians continue to have access and choice to a wide variety of products.
“It is vital for our members to get involved and contact their local Member of Parliament,” says CHFA President and CEO, Penelope Marrett. “Our industry is in crisis and there is an extremely urgent need to find a solution”.
The natural health products sector in Canada has been regulated since 2004; the new Organic Products Regulations came into force June 30th, 2009, giving Canadians more confidence in the industry and its products. The CHFA represents 1,100 business owners and operators and is an industry that contributes $3.5 billion to the Canadian economy.
“Safety for Canadian consumers has always been our primary concern,” continued Marrett. “Our industry is totally committed to this principle. In order for Canadians to continue to have access to safe, high quality NHPs, we are committed to continue to working with the federal government to resolve this impending disaster”.
The CHFA continues to work with Health Canada on an ongoing basis to resolve these problems on a collaborative basis.
For more information on the CHFA, visit www.CHFA.ca OR SaveOurNaturalHealthProducts.ca
The Canadian Health Food Association is Canada’s largest national trade association dedicated to the natural and organic products industry. Our members represent the entire supply chain, including growers, manufacturers, retailers, wholesalers, distributors, and importers involved in a variety of industry sub-sectors, such as vitamin and mineral supplements, herbal products, homeopathics, sports nutrition products, natural and organic foods, fibres and health and beauty aids. CHFA member products support Canadians seeking optimal health and well-being.