He said "£50,000 including VAT".
He also confirmed that following the pre-action protocols for Judicial Review a letter before action had been sent to the government and they had been given until Thursday 2nd October 2003 to respond.
PA gave some background information on the passage of the FSD and what HFMA had been doing about it.
Basically it was felt by key industry interests that the FSD was "the best deal we could get" and the UK "which had the casting vote " decided to accept the positive list system on that basis, lest the upcoming EU presidencies put something worse in its place.
CRN UK's stated policy on the FSD was that they "want regulation" and "want harmonisation" and they were prepared to "compromise on levels and nutrients to achieve harmonisation".
HFMA however were not prepared to compromise and wanted the highest maximum upper safe levels for nutrients and the widest nutrient list possible and they had been working as hard as they could to achieve that result.
Now they were assisting in the production of dossiers, which was proving to be a very expensive exercise.
There was much discussion as to on what terms ANH should become one of the parties in a tri-partite structure (NAHS, HFMA, ANH) that would run 'Phase 1' of the case (ie the UK court phase, with the purpose of gaining the referral to the ECJ).
Given that ANH had disclosed publicly at Harrogate that it had raised £80k to date for its legal challenge to FSD, Peter Aldis maintained that if ANH wished to "buy itself a seat at the table" it should release the £80k to the Irwin Mitchell client account. DH sought to clarify that what they were saying was that for ANH "to be allowed to join the train that was about to leave the station" (being the NAHS FSD challenge), they would have to pay over all the monies they had raised.
PA confirmed that this was precisely what was being requested of ANH as the price of being allowed to join in the action, which NAHS was bringing. It required "a leap of faith"on the part of ANH.
The reasons given were: NAHS was still running the kava case. HFMA had spent its budget for the year, had not campaigned for this purpose and getting agreement to commit further funds for this was not straight forward owing to a split in views across its membership. ANH was therefore the only party who had the money at this time.
DH and RV responded that ANH would be more than happy to release funds if ANH knew what it was buying into but to-date no information on the other parties' state of readiness had been given whatsoever. DH requested that before we decide on the exact structure and terms of cooperation (Items 3 and 4 on the Agenda), we should hear AL's detailed costings and procedural steps and his presentation of the basis for the NAHS legal challenge (Items 5 and 6 of the Agenda).
CW asked for opinions from NAHS and HFMA on this proposal and MA and RP made clear their resolute refusal to accede to this request. As RP put it, "You will only get to see my underwear when you have paid your price."
DH made the comment to PA that NBTY could pay for the case on their own if they wanted to and PA responded indicating that NBTY had already invested a huge amount in protecting the industry and suggested that perhaps this was not adequately appreciated. PA made the point
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