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BZP claim nonsense

28 April 2005

BZP claim nonsense

The Social Tonics Association of New Zealand (STANZ) today criticised the Institute of Environmental Health for repeating grossly incorrect claims about the strength of BZP.

In a media statement, the Institute repeated a claim originally made by US Drug Intelligence Centre (USDIC) that BZP was 10 to 20 times stronger than methamphetamine. This error has been publicly acknowledged and retracted by the USDIC.

“Repeating such a wildly inaccurate claim shows a very poor understanding of the issue. The Institute of Environmental Health should do its homework,” said STANZ spokesperson Matt Bowden.

“America is not the best place to look for guidance in drug policy issues. The US decision on BZP was based on incorrect evidence.”

Mr Bowden said it was important that groups claiming scientific status had their facts right.

“Up to eight million BZP-based products have been sold in New Zealand alone. BZP is much closer in potency to caffeine than highly dangerous methamphetamines,” he said.

“What the Institute has done here is repeat a withdrawn claim that exaggerates the potency of BZP by 100 to 400 times. This would make BZP stronger than P when the fact of the matter is that, by weight, BZP is weaker than caffeine.”

Mr Bowden said he would write to the Institute drawing attention to their error and provide them with the correct information. He said there was not a single documented death anywhere in the world attributed to BZP.

“However, we agree these products shouldn’t be sold to children and are working with Government to place some legal controls around their sale and manufacture. Hopefully these controls will be in place very soon.”

Mr Bowden cited Hospital Emergency Department data showing a steady decrease in illegal drug overdoses since the advent of social tonics containing BZP in New Zealand.

“We are happy to debate the merits of these products, because the facts speak for themselves.”

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