AHPA amends guidance on Salmonella testing and lead limits

AHPA amends guidance on Salmonella testing and lead limits

Amendments change the stated sample size for testing for Salmonella spp. to 25 grams and lower the maximum quantitative limit for lead in herbal supplements to 6 mcg/day.

The board of trustees of the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) has amended AHPA's Guidance on Microbiology and Mycotoxins to reflect standard industry practice and its Guidance on Heavy Metals to lower the limit on lead where manufacturers choose to establish a lead specification for herbal dietary supplements. The actions came during the board's recent July meeting.

The amendment to AHPA's Guidance on Microbiology and Mycotoxins changes the stated sample size for testing for Salmonella spp. to 25 grams, although the actual sample size used may vary depending on the method employed.

AHPA Chief Science Officer Steven Dentali, Ph.D., said the amendment makes the sample size for Salmonella spp. testing "more consistent with standard practice."

Also at the July meeting, the board amended the AHPA Guidance on Heavy Metals by lowering the maximum quantitative limit for lead in herbal supplements to 6 mcg/day. While not a requirement, this recommendation may be helpful when a company determines to establish a specification for the lead level in a manufactured supplement.

Certain limitations and conditions apply to this AHPA guidance, including that the quantitative limits suggested are applicable only to herbal supplements that are consumed in a total daily amount of 5 grams or less and that a product in compliance with this guidance may require a warning in order to comply with California Proposition 65's listing of these chemicals.

AHPA develops guidance policies to advance its mission to promote responsible commerce in herbal supplements. These policies address a variety of labeling and manufacturing issues and reflect the consensus of AHPA's members and its board of trustees. Unlike AHPA's trade recommendations, compliance with AHPA's guidance policies is not a condition of membership. Nevertheless, AHPA encourages its members and non-member companies to adopt each of these policies in the interest of establishing consistent and informed trade practices.

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