You may not be aware that recently a high court battle between Blue Bio Pharmaceuticals and the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency has been taking place regarding the status of glucosamine products. Blue Bio Pharmaceuticals attempted to force the MHRA to determine that glucosamine products should be classified as medicinal.
The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is a UK government agency which is responsible for ensuring that medicines and medical devices work and are acceptably safe.
Medicines vs food supplements
Presently glucosamine is classified as a food supplement. To briefly explain the difference between the two: medicines are specially formulated for a diseased patient population, whereas food supplements are intended for a healthy consumer population. Medicines require the supervision of a qualified physician whereas dietary supplements are self-administered by the consumer.
Judgement ensures that consumer choice remains
Should the judgement have gone the way of Blue Bio the choice of glucosamine on the market would have been drastically reduced and the price likely to have increased. A great deal of power would have switched to the big pharmaceuticals and importantly you wouldn't be able to buy glucosamine in the way you do presently and it would be far more difficult and costly to do so.
The claim was struck out of court by the Judge in extremely quick time which reflects the strength of the argument by the MHRA. The MHRA were supported by the HFMA who represent the interests of the UK natural health products industry at all levels of the legislative, regulatory and Parliamentary process.
Just Vitamins are proud members of the HFMA and work closely with them to ensure that standards and industry regulations are rigorously maintained and that we are responsible towards our consumers.
A healthy balanced diet is the best way to consume all the nutrients we need. Sometimes however this isn't possible and then supplements can help. This article isn't intended to replace medical advice. Please consult your healthcare professional before trying any supplements or herbal medicines.