The Natural Products Association (NPA) is the leading representative of the dietary supplement industry with more than 1,900 members, including suppliers and retailers of vitamins and other dietary supplements. Dr. Cara Welch, senior vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs, comments on this week’s report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) about dietary supplements:
“The Natural Products Association and our industry supporters advocated for the law that established Adverse Event Reporting and we’re pleased to see that the GAO report confirms the importance of this law within the industry. In fact, it shows that 71 percent of adverse events reported to the FDA came from the supplement industry per the requirements of SAER law.
“The GAO report helps demonstrate that consumer safety is the number one priority for supplement manufacturers. NPA echoes the GAO recommendation that FDA expand their information collection by partnering with poison control centers and educating the public.
“While the FDA increased the number of inspections from 120 in 2008 to more than 400 in 2012, NPA is encouraged that they only had to take 19 actions related to AER violations during this time. Still, we are concerned any time a violation may be found. NPA offers extensive educational opportunities to help supplement makers comply with government regulations and recently partnered with other industry members to offer widespread education on adverse event reporting.”