As a result of feedback and having commissioned several independent economic impact assessments, NZHT believes that the Natural Health Products Bill would adversely affect the natural product industry and consumers. In particular, the Bill would impose significant new compliance costs and restrictions on the manufacture, sale and supply of natural health products for no commensurate benefits, would stifle innovation, and would cause a number of small to medium enterprises in particular to struggle to remain viable.
For example, under the current rules (Dietary Supplements Regulations 1985) dietary supplements have some restrictions on what they may contain, they can make a range of verifiable health benefit claims, but must not make therapeutic claims. The Natural Health Products Bill, however, would impose considerable restrictions on what a natural health product can contain (ie it must only contain pre-approved ingredients), would continue the prohibition on therapeutic claims, and would impose similar limits on the types of health benefit claims that can be made under the current regime. The Bill would also impose significant new compliance costs (both quantifiable and unquantifiable), including annual notification fees for each product sold.
NZHT has designed the following survey to ascertain what level of support (if any) there is for the Natural Health Products Bill within the natural health product sector. The survey will help those directly affected by the Bill, ie manufacturers, exporters, importers, distributors, retailers, and practitioners, to understand the effect of the Bill on their business if it were to become law.