Health Canada: Keeping Health Products Out of Canada
Since 2004, Health Canada's Natural Health Products Regulations Have Forced Over 20,000 Products Off the Canadian Market
Below is a list of US companies whose products used to be sold in Canada prior to the 2004 implementation of the Natural Health Product Regulations. Following a seven-year process, in which the number one request of Canadians, by far, was that they wanted increased access to more natural health products, and in which NHPs were supposed to have been given their own category separate from either Foods or Drugs under the Food and Drugs Act, Health Canada came out with the Natural Health Product Regulations. Not only did these regulations classify natural products as drugs without providing the new legislative category, but they were also supposed to protect Canadians' access to NHPs.
As is reflected in the list below, they have had the opposite effect. There are literally multiple thousands of products (20,000+) that Canadian stores can no longer get or sell.
Note that this list does not reflect the products that were lost when Canadian companies shortened their pricelist due to the cost of complying with the regulations.
1. Solaray, Kal, and all other products produced by Nutraceutical Inc. - Over 5,000 products offered in their US pricelist. Some of the best products anywhere in North America. Sold in Canada for more than ten years when discontinued. Did everything Health Canada asked of them for four years before having their site license denied by Health Canada. Gave up in frustration as they couldn't spend any more money on legal fees.
2. HerbPharm - Producer of hundreds of herbal tinctures. Sold in Canada for more than ten years when discontinued after the NHPD regs came into effect.
3. Gaia Herbals - Producers of hundreds of herbal tinctures. Sold in Canada for more than 10 years when discontinued after the NHPD regs came into effect.
4. Allergy Research Products - Over 650 extremely high quality natural products of all sorts. Sold in Canada for more than ten years when discontinued. Will no longer ship to Canada.
5. Country Life - Hundreds of high quality natural products in tablets and capsules. Sold for more than 10 years in Canada when discontinued because of the regulations.
6. Source Naturals - 2,300 products in two lines representing a full range of nutraceuticals. Will not ship to Canada period because of all the shipments held at the border.
7. Vitamin Research Products - More than 400 innovative, well researched products that are flagged and regularly denied entry at the border.
8. Jarrow - More than 600 well researched, high quality products. Submitted product license applications to Health Canada, but gave up in frustration with shipments being blocked at the border.
9. Herbasway - Producers of green tea products. No longer available due to the regulations.
10. Yogi Teas - These are just herbal teas. Most are no longer available due to the regulations.
11. Sweet Wheat - High quality wheat grass products. No longer available due to the regulations.
12. Bernard Jensen Products - Available in Canada since the 1970s. No longer sold due to the regulations.
13. Organic Essentials - Organic tampons. Disallowed because their applicator was considered a medical device by Health Canada.
14. Zand Herbals - Hundreds of herbal products sold in Canada since the 1980s. Pulled out of Canada after the regs went into effect.
15. Life Extension Products - Hundreds of extremely well researched NHPs no longer allowed into Canada for commercial sale.
16. Dr. Christophers Original Formulas - More than 200 herbal formulas sold in Canada since the 1970s. No longer available because of the regulations.
17. Vaxa - No longer allowed across the border due to the regulations.
18. Robert Grey cleansing products - Sold in Canada since the 1980s. Have pulled out of Canada due to the regulations.
19. Natrol - Over 1000 products. Sold in Canada until the regulations went into effect.
20. Houston Nutraceuticals - Enzymes used to improve digestion in kids. Available until the regulations came into effect. Then all commercial shipments were refused entry into Canada.
*** This is just a partial list of the products Canadian stores can no longer carry, products that they used to sell, prior to the regulations. ***
There are dozens of long standing Canadian distributors of NHPs that are experiencing great economic hardship because Health Canada is stopping their shipments at the Canada - US border, for any variety of reasons. These are mostly products for which product license applications have already been submitted to Health Canada.
In addition, when the regulations came into effect, almost every Canadian NHP supplier shortened their pricelist (sometimes dramatically) because of the cost involved in submitting the applications for licensing each product. This is a drug-style approval system that was never supposed to be applied to NHPs, as per the Expert Advisory Committee, the Standing Committee on Health, and Parliament. They mandated that Health Canada should produce regulations that reflected the inherent safety and low risk levels of these products. As you can see, they have done the opposite.
Health Disclaimer. Copyright ©2008. Published with permission. John Biggs is the owner of Optimum Health in Edmonton, Alberta and is not affiliated with avivahealth.com.
You may also be interesting in reading more about Canada Bill C-51.