The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) sent letters to the editors of media outlets to correct articles with inaccurate information that portray the herbal products industry as "unregulated" and overstates the risk of dietary supplements.
In a TIME magazine article ("Cleveland Clinic's New Medicine," April 17), the writer, Alexandra Sifferlin, inaccurately states, "The FDA doesn't regulate herbs and supplements." Also, in a segment of the "Katie" Show, ("Top Herbs for Your Health," April 29), both Katie Couric and her guest inaccurately assert, "These products [herbs] are not regulated by the government."
"The Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act in combination with other laws and regulations provide comprehensive federal oversight of the well-regulated supplement industry," writes AHPA President Michael McGuffin in a letter to the editor to TIME magazine and the producers of "Katie." "Companies must also comply with FDA's current good manufacturing practice requirements for dietary supplements, which are a much more stringent standard than for conventional foods."
AHPA also responded to a Forbes magazine editorial ("We Worry About Trace Amounts Of BPA While Playing Russian Roulette With Dietary Supplements," April 11) by Geoffrey Kabat, who inaccurately overstates the risk of dietary supplements and minimizes the laws that regulate this industry.
"Dr. Kabat's editorial also confuses legal supplements with illegal, drug-adulterated products that masquerade as supplements," McGuffin wrote in a letter to the editor of Forbes. "This is a significant international problem and AHPA shares Dr. Kabat's concern. These products are completely illegal, and AHPA advocates for full enforcement of current laws and regulations to prevent criminals from making and selling these products."
AHPA will continue to monitor media coverage and respond to inaccuracies as appropriate. AHPA tracks inaccurate media coverage and responses on the AHPA website.