In response to yesterday's introduction of S. 1310, the Dietary Supplement Labeling Act of 2011, by Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL), the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), the leading trade association representing the dietary supplement industry, issued the following statement.
Statement by Steve Mister, President & CEO, CRN:
"CRN opposes the Dietary Supplement Labeling Act of 2011 because it is a misguided bill that doesn't address the concerns raised by Senator Durbin, but instead creates more bureaucracy for an already resource-challenged agency and more red tape and costs for industry while doing nothing to further protect consumers from his concerns. Instead of urging FDA to use its current enforcement authority to isolate and punish those companies that are not following the law, this bill serves to punish all responsible companies with its overreaching mandates.
The bill contains duplicative requirements that already exist under current law that gives FDA the proper legal authority to take action to protect consumers and maintain safety standards. FDA needs to continue working toward becoming a more efficient steward of its resources, and we continuously call on the Agency to use its power under the law. We urge Senator Durbin to join us in that effort.
However, to pile on more work for an underfunded agency already struggling to accomplish everything currently on its plate is both counterproductive and unnecessary. Further, in the midst of an economic downturn and a robust debate on the state of health in America, Senator Durbin along with many of his colleagues, have correctly indicated that well-care instead of sick-care is the direction that America must move towards in seeking to lower healthcare related expenses and burdens. This legislation only removes us from that path by placing undue hurdles in front of legitimate manufacturers, suppliers and sellers of dietary supplements that promote good health and wellness.
It is our sincere hope that FDA will be given the resources it needs to enforce the laws already on the books. FDA must prioritize its enforcement efforts, address those companies that flout the law and be held accountable for the laws and regulations it is already expected to enforce.
More than 150 million Americans take dietary supplements annually, and for good reason. When used wisely, supplements are among the safest products available to consumers. CRN has worked with Senator Durbin in the past to pass legislation that allows consumers to safely access products that can help to promote a healthier lifestyle, and we hope to be able to find future common ground with the Senator. But not with this bill."
The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), founded in 1973, is a Washington, D.C.-based trade association representing dietary supplement manufacturers and ingredient suppliers. In addition to complying with a host of federal and state regulations governing dietary supplements in the areas of manufacturing, marketing, quality control and safety, our 75+ manufacturer and supplier members also agree to adhere to additional voluntary guidelines as well as CRN's Code of Ethics. Visit www.crnusa.org.