To: IAHF List
Subject: "Big Brother" to Study Supplement Safety: IAHF Calls For Burton to Conduct Oversight on FDA/Codex Vitamin Issue
From: "International Advocates for Health Freedom" firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: Sun, 31 Dec 2000 14:10:28 -0500
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Everyone: Please Forward Widely, Send this to Burton yourself, and to your own Senators and Congressmen
CLEARLY WE ARE BEING SET UP!! OVERSIGHT BADLY NEEDED ON CODEX VITAMIN ISSUE!!
FDA Only Gives Consumers til Jan 16 to file Codex Comments for Meeting Thats Not til 11 Months from Now (Nov. 2001) (Massive Study and Reading of Fine Print Required- Comments Process Not INTENDED to be "User Friendly). Now FDA is Funding NAS with 1 Million To Conduct a Bogus, Totally Unecessary "Safety Study" of Vitamins as the railroading of our rights continues...
To: Congressman Dan Burton, Chairman
House Government Reform and Oversight Committee
c/o Beth Clay
Dear Congressman Burton:
I will be discussing this on the Gary Null radio show Tuesday January 2, from Noon- 1PM US East Coast Time http://www.vitalcast.com/. Vitamin Consumers World Wide Will Hear the Broadcast- Part of an Ongoing Series Null is Doing on the Codex Vitamin Issue
What justification does the FDA offer for wasting $1,000,000. from their limited budget by funding the National Academy of Science to conduct this totally unecessary "autoritative review" of the safety of dietary supplements? [See article below] I will be greatly angered if Congress does not stop this frivolous waste of taxpayers money, and am certain that this constitutes yet another FDA witch hunt against safe vitamins.
I am greatly concerned that the National Academy of Sciences is not subject to the Freedom of Information Act, so there is no way we can get the raw data behind this latest vitamin "safety" study, or the CVs of its authors any more than we can get this information regarding the NAS paper titled "A Risk Assessment Model for Establishing Safe Upper Levels for Nutrients". Given that safety is our only "out" for not harmonizing to international standards, it is obvious to me and to many other consumers that the FDA is setting us up to lose in a trade dispute because the safety "standard" that NAS is setting forth is bogus and arbitrary. Although you told the FDA in writing not to put this biased paper on the table at Codex (see http://www.iahf.com/ letters from Congress), they did so ANYWAY over your direct written objection.
Although you ORIGINALLY promised to hold oversight hearings on the Codex vitamin issue, you later reneged on that promise due to pressure from CRN and NNFA, pharmaceutically dominated vitamin trade associations. The conflict of interest is readily apparent upon examining http://www.crnusa.org/ where you can clearly see that numerous multinational pharmaceutical companies belong to CRN including Hoffman La Roche, which was fined $500,000,000. in 1999 by the US Justice Department for engaging in illegal price fixing in the sale of vitamin raw materials. Through the Trans Atlantic Business Dialogue (TABD) several CRN member companies have annouced that American vitamin regulations are to be harmonized to EU standards. (See press release http://www.crnusa.org/ News Release Section) Grossly restrictive EU standards will be shoved down the throats of all 15 EU Nations by March of 2001 unless the EU Parliament responds to complaints from vitamin consumers all over the world (See http://www.laleva.org English section, Petition)
If you fail to hold Congressional Oversight hearings regarding this alleged "vitamin safety study", and the Codex vitamin issue, you won't be doing anything to stop the FDA from setting us up for harmonization to grossly restrictive emerging international standards. No US laws are safe from harmonization to international standards, and the Federal Statute which allegedly "protects" our laws from harmonization is nothing more than a paper tiger. Numerous examples abound which prove this such as the recent NAFTA Truck Ruling which imperils US public safety http://www.citizen.org/press/pr-gtw17.htm
According to JAMA- the use of properly used, physician prescribed pharmaceutical drugs constitutes the 4th leading cause of death in the world, killing an estimated 200,000. people annually- the equivalent of a 747 full of people crashing and burning each calendar day for a full year. Given this, are you REALLY going to allow the FDA to waste $1,000,000. to conduct another biased, anti vitamin study intended to help pharmaceutical interests to curtail the use of these highly effective natural substances? I would appreciate an answer to my question because I've been documenting this set up for several years now, but you don't seem to care much at all.
It is apparent to me that the FDA, Pharmaceutical Interests, and the Codex Commission are working overtime to block consumer access to dietary supplements all over the world, and unless you conduct Oversight hearings on the Codex Vitamin Issue, there will be absolutely NOTHING to stop them. The FDA is only allowing us until January 16 to file the next set of Codex comments for a meeting of the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Use that doesn't even BEGIN until November of next year, 11 months from now. It is obvious that we're being set up. Consumers and small companies aren't being given enough time to file these comments. This is a recurring pattern, yet so far at least you have not provided any oversight, so I am once again requesting it, and would appreciate knowing if you intend to continue ignoring my request for Oversight, and if so, why? What are you allowing our dietary supplement laws to be set up for harmonization to grossly restrictive international standards when you have been so thoroughly and consistently apprised of exactly what is going on? I am ccing this to my Congressman, and would appreciate your getting back to me on this immediately. It is because of this exact type of situation that we had a huge demonstration against the WTO in Seattle, and Congress has no right to desert us when we need help to defend our domestic laws and our right to access dietary supplements.
For Health Freedom,
John C. Hammell, President
International Advocates for Health Freedom
PO Box 625 Floyd VA 24091 USA
In a letter to dietary supplement manufacturers the US Food and Drug Administration has contracted the National Academy of Science's Institute of Medicine (IOM) to help it develop a protocol for reviewing the safety of dietary supplements.
"Given the increasing role of dietary supplement products in the US marketplace, a comprehensive and authoritative review of the state-of-the-art knowledge base on the available safety data on the broad range of ingredients used in dietary supplement products in the US marketplace is urgently needed," the agency said.
The $1 million contract "has been let in order to provide an appropriate protocol for the agency to use in reviewing the safety of dietary supplements," the FDA said in the letter.
Under the terms of the contract, the IOM will form a committee to determine ways to assess the safety of dietary supplement ingredients. The project, which began September 30, will continue through September 29, 2002. The IOM has recently begun the process of seeking candidates to serve on the committee.