Over the past few decades, the homeopathic industry has grown into a multibillion-dollar industry and national drug stores are finally recognizing the merits of our product. But as the industry has grown, so, too, has skepticism from legislators and regulators. While we successfully argued for the effectiveness of current regulations at a FDA hearing a few months ago, we still face significant regulatory hurdles. For instance, on September 21, 2015, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) plans to investigate whether our industry’s marketing and advertising initiatives are considered deceptive.
- How truth-in-advertising principles apply to homeopathic remedies
- The science behind homeopathy and its effectiveness
- How homeopathic products are advertised
- What consumers understand about homeopathy
- The effects of recent class action lawsuits against homeopathic manufacturers
If the FTC deems that the advertising/marketing for homeopathic remedies is deceptive, the consequences to our industry—and to your bottom line—may be grave.
For instance, if the FTC concludes that terms such as “remedy” or “natural” are inherently deceptive, regulators could require homeopathic manufacturers to eliminate these words from our labeling and marketing materials. Not only would this make it almost impossible to communicate product benefits to our customers, but it could also mean a potentially dramatic loss in sales as we are forced to rebrand entire product lines or face significant fines.
Now is the time to explain to our legislators and regulators how our products are made so that the FTC cannot block us from successfully marketing our products. To aid in this effort, AAHP has brought together a task force of experts to represent our interests at the FTC event.
· Mark Land, President of AAHP and VP of Operations and Regulatory Affairs at Boiron
· David Spangler, Senior VP of Policy, General Counsel, and Secretary, Consumer Healthcare Products Association
· Yale Martin, Independent Retail Merchandising Consultant and formerly with Walmart
· Peter Fisher, M.D., Clinical Director and Director of Research at the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine, University College London Hospitals
· David Riley, Co-founder of the American Medicine Institute and Southwest Health Options IPA, Diplomat of the American Board of Internal Medicine, American Institute of Homeopathy
· Christina Sarchio, Attorney for Boiron
· Paul D. Rubin, Attorney for Boiron
· J.P. Borneman, Chairman and CEO of the Standard Homeopathic Company and Hyland’s Inc.
· Eric Foxman R.Ph. Secretary of AAHP and Board member of the Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia Convention of the U.S.
Although AAHP has put significant financial resources toward this effort, we can’t afford to do it alone. Only by pooling our resources and creating a strong, united front can we preserve our industry and livelihoods.
All donations will go towards training and prepping a top-class industry defense team who can tell the industry’s story and protect our rights at the upcoming FTC workshop. Moreover, donations are tax deductible* and will provide FREE access to an AAHP webinar. Donations by non-members can be credited towards the first year of membership dues for AAHP.
To donate, just send a check (and make payable) to AAHP, 4332 S.E. Logus Rd., Milwaukie, OR 97222. Or simply make your donation securely via PayPal:
*Although certain political activities and expenses incurred are allowable for 501(c)(6) tax-exempt organizations such as AAHP, taxpayers are not allowed to deduct any expenses incurred for lobbying. AAHP estimates that up to 17% of all funds collected for the AAHP Industry Defense Fund will be used for lobbying so will NOT be tax deductible. As the year draws to a close, AAHP will provide donors with an acknowledgement letter stating the calculated percent based on actual spending on nondeductible lobbying expenses. Please consult your tax advisor for more information.