Today Newsroom reported that the Natural Health Products bill has been quietly dropped. Fellow Sciblogger Mark Hanna offered thoughts on this in an interview. There is a need to address an unregulated market that has problems.
In an earlier piece, I offered some thoughts on the draft bill. I felt quite a bit could be added. Claims about products matter, and how products are presented matter, too.
I can’t also help thinking of the sheer amount of work that has been done. It’s 7 years since I first wrote on the call for submissions. In the article Health Products NZ corporate affairs director Alison Quesnel says her organisation has working on it for 16 years.
I’d like to learn what the detailed reasons for dropping this were, and how it happened. Is there a wider picture? Perhaps some other approach to regulating this area is intended. At present no-one seems to know.
It’s not helped by that some of Winston Peters’ remarks seem well off target, e.g. “Worse, it seems that pressure for it has come from across the Tasman and we need to tell the Aussies to naff off,” Appeals to Australia vs. NZ rivalry aren’t meaningful or helpful here.
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If you’re looking for comments on the Newsroom article, it hasn’t been put up on their Facebook page so don’t bother!
The image isn’t me being gross about those offering natural remedies. It’s more just a fun cartoon I found while looking an illustration. It takes quite an effort to find illustrations for these articles, and often I like to use historical images.
Cartoon featuring Morrisons Vegetable Pills. The inscription reads,
Wonderful effect of Morrisons vegetable pills. “They told me if I took 1000 pills at night I should be quite another thing in the morning.”
Source Wikipedia. ©Wellcome Trust, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.