banner
alive logo
FoodFamilyLifestyleBeautySustainabilityHealthImmunity

SOS for Canada’s Natural Health Products

What you can do to save our supplements

Share

The Federal Government is working to approve changes that will see natural health products become subject to heavy fees and monitoring processes. If approved, this will suffocate your favourite natural health brands in red tape, leading to skyrocketed prices for the products you love—that is, if they are able to survive on store shelves in Canada at all. Taking an industry lead, the Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA) is urging Canadians to stand up for their access to natural health products through the Save Our Supplements campaign. Get involved and take action right now—before July 26, 2023—to stop these changes by writing a letter to your Member of Parliament (MP) with this quick and easy form from the SOS campaign. Then, spread the word!

What are NHPs?

NHPs is an acronym for natural health products, which Canadians use every day as part of their proactive self-care and wellness routine. NHPs include a wide range of products, such as vitamins, minerals, probiotics, omega-3s, fibre, collagen, herbal remedies, and certain topical products, including toothpaste, sunscreen, shampoos, deodorant, and hand sanitizers.

Advertisement

A closer look at the changes

Right now, natural health products are regulated in Canada under the Natural Health Products Regulations (NHPR). All natural health products must be approved by Health Canada before they are legally allowed to be sold in Canada and provide a Natural Product Number (NPN) or Homeopathic Medicine Number (DIN-HM) on the product label—so Canadians can feel confident that the products they use are safe, effective, and high quality.

These regulations, which came into effect in 2004, were developed following extensive consultations that reflected the desire of Canadians for a regulatory framework appropriate for the unique circumstances and low risk of natural health products. Almost 20 years on, and Canada is still the only country that has a dedicated set of regulations governing natural health products.

But all of this is set to change.

New regulations will completely over-burden many small and medium-sized businesses with unreasonable cost recovery fees and cumbersome, expensive labelling requirements. These labelling requirements will double packaging sizes (for the same amount of product) and reduce recyclability—contrary to the environmental goals of many natural health enthusiasts.

Natural health products are a huge part of Canada

  • 71 percent of Canadians use natural health products as part of their proactive health and well-being.
  • The natural health sector is a $5.5 billion industry that contributes $2.8 billion in taxable revenue.
  • 8 in 10 natural health companies are small to medium sized.
  • The natural health industry contributes 54,000 jobs across Canada.

Advertisement

What this means for you

Advertisement

Increased prices and lack of availability

Just when you thought inflation had pushed the prices of the products you love and depend on to dizzying highs, these proposed changes to Canada’s natural health industry will cause price increases. They may even push your favourite brands out of the marketplace all together.

Advertisement

Decreased product choice

Meeting the new complicated and hefty fees will force brands to re-evaluate their product line, dropping products that are too expensive or unprofitable.

  • A recent survey of more than 70 percent of brands in Canada said they would have to pull product from market if changes go through.
  • 1 in 5 natural health brands said they would seriously consider leaving Canada should the proposed regulations be approved.

All of this means there will be fewer products and brands for Canadians to choose from when purchasing natural health products.

Advertisement

Stifled innovation

In addition to a smaller selection of products overall, the burden proposed by these changes will likely scare exciting new products and international brands away from Canada.

Advertisement

No love for local

In a recent survey, 83 percent of companies said they wouldn’t be able to meet the proposed costs. This will translate to small, local businesses being priced out of the market.

Advertisement

More packaging and more waste

The other recently proposed changes will significantly increase the amount of packaging required for your favourite natural health products, reducing recyclability and adversely impacting the environment in the process.

Advertisement

Act now!

Protect your access to supplements and other natural health products.

Advertisement

Make your voice heard

Tell your Member of Parliament (MP) before July 26, 2023, to stop Health Canada from taking your natural health products. Send a letter to your MP now—it takes less than two minutes!

Advertisement

Spread the word

There is power in numbers, so let’s get talking. Tell your friends, family, and social networks to stop Health Canada from taking away our natural health products. For resources that can help build awareness in your community, download the SOS campaign’s Action Kit.

Advertisement

Have questions?

Contact the CHFA by email at advocacy@chfa.ca.

Advertisement
Advertisement

READ THIS NEXT

More than Skin Deep
Beauty

More than Skin Deep

The psychology under the surface of skin care

Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNMMichelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM