Natural Foods Merchandiser

Tests Show Labels Telling The Truth

Glucosamine products from 28 different manufacturers all contained the ingredient amounts listed on the label in tests conducted by the National Nutritional Foods Association and made public in June. The tested products were purchased at random from retailers, then sent to independent laboratories for analysis under the NNFA's TruLabel program.

Members of Newport Beach, Calif.-based NNFA are required to participate in TruLabel. Manufacturers must supply NNFA with labels from all the products they sell. Information found on the "Supplement Facts" portion of the label is regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. NNFA tracks that information in its database. Companies whose products do not pass the Trulabel test must go through a remediation process and retesting. Products that fail twice must be removed from the market.

"Our goal is not to 'test and tell,'" said David Seckman, NNFA's CEO. "If a product fails a TruLabel test, we work with the manufacturer to find out what went wrong and how the problem can be remedied. Eliminating products on store shelves that don't meet label claims benefits [both] the industry and consumers."

NNFA said the products listed in the table below passed the TruLabel test. It noted that some manufacturers may be missing for circumstantial reasons, not necessarily because their products failed.

NNFA Label Testing—Products Tested

NNFA Member Company

Product Name

Abi Imports

Glucosamine Sulfate

Basic Organics

Glucosamine Sulfate 500 mg MSM 400 mg

Doctor's Best Inc.

Best Glucosamine Sulfate

Enzymatic Therapy

GS-500 Glucosamine Sulfate

Foodscience of Vermont

Glucosamine Plus

General Nutrition

Glucosamine Sulfate

Highland Laboratories

Glucosamine S

Jarrow Formulas

Glucosamine Sulfate 500

Lifetime Nutritional Specialties

Glucosamine Sulfate 500 mg


Glucosamine Sulfate


Glucosamine Complex

Natural Factors

Glucosamine Sulfate 1,000 mg

Naturally Vitamins

Gluco Cartilage

Nature's Life

GS 500 Glucosamine Sulfate

Nature's Plus

Ultra Maximum Strength Glucosamine 600

Nature's Way

Glucosamine Sulfate


Glucosamine Sulfate 750 mg

Nutricology Inc./Allergy Research Group

Glucosamine Sulfate

Nutrition Now

Glucosamine Joint Mobility Formula

Optimum Nutrition

Glucosamine Sulfate


GLS-500 Glucosamine Sulfate


Glucosamine Sulfate


Glucosamine Sulfate 1,000 mg

Springtime Inc.

Glucosamine HCI GL 900

The Nutra Sense


Threshold/Source Naturals

Glucosamine Sulfate


Glucosamine Sulfate

Ultimate Nutrition

Glucosamine Sulfate

Now For The Bad News

Last month,, an independent evaluator of dietary supplements based in White Plains, N.Y., reported that only nine of 17 products it tested for valerian passed the organization's tests. Four products "completely lacked the marker compounds that identify the presence of Valeriana officinalis, and four others had roughly half of the expected levels," said in a press statement. A second independent lab confirmed these results, the organization said. Valerian supplements are primarily used as sleep aids.

Asked about the results, Phillip W. Harvey, director of science and quality assurance for NNFA, said the organization has not yet tested valerian products. "I can't speak for the test methods ConsumerLab used, [but from reading their Web site] I don't see anything unbalanced in them," he said. Nonetheless, he noted that testing is a complex process that may not detect ingredients whose presence is inadvertently masked by other ingredients. Harvey added that NNFA's TruLabel program tries to fix problems it finds by working with member companies. "I think that has a certain message about what we're trying to do versus what ConsumerLab is trying to do," he said.

Natural Foods Merchandiser volume XXII/number 8/p. 7

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.