Scoop has an Ethical Paywall
License needed for work use Register

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


At Last Someone Is Listening, Says Health Group

9 December 2003

Gary Mabey
Joint Co-ordinator

At Last Someone Is Listening, Says Health Group

The Health Select Committee's report on a proposed trans-Tasman agency to regulate herbs, vitamins and minerals is an impressively researched and very balanced contribution, according to New Zealand's leading advocacy group for consumer choice in health care.

"In more than a decade of lobbying and making submissions, this report is by far the best-researched and most open-minded official document we have seen," said Gary Mabey, Joint Co-Ordinator of Citizens for Health Choices.

"Its key recommendation is a direct endorsement of the position of our group and most of the New Zealand industry: namely, that any system for regulating herbs, vitamins and minerals should be separate from medicines and food," Mr Mabey said.

Last week, Health Minister Annette King criticised the Select Committee for taking too long to release this report, saying that Australia was becoming impatient.

"But two things are now clear," Mr Mabey said. "First, the report took some time to produce because it has been deeply researched and carefully thought out. It is the best reference work on this topic.

"Second, if the public servants who have been advising the Government had taken the time to be equally diligent and open-minded, the Government wouldn't be in such a mess on this topic."

It is enormously significant that the Select Committee's report was unanimous, Mr Mabey said.

"Ms King should change her mind about signing the Treaty with Australia on Wednesday [editors: 10 December] to set up the proposed trans-Tasman agency to regulate herbs, vitamins and supplements.

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

"Signing the Treaty flies in the face of the unanimous view of the Select Committee, including Ms King's own Labour members.

"This is the time for the Government to reject Australian bullying and stand up for New Zealand's democratic traditions."

Media statement
For immediate release


Who we are

Citizens for Health Choices is one of New Zealand’s leading and most visible advocates for consumer choice in health care.

Citizens for Health Choices was founded in 1992 by a group of consumers, health practitioners, and people from the dietary supplements industry. Since then it has been working to make sure New Zealanders have continued access to the natural health products they know and trust.

Today Citizens for Health Choices comprises more than 1000 consumer members, an Advisory Board of industry representatives, and support from New Zealand companies and individuals from across the dietary supplement sector – consumers, manufacturers, distributors, importers and practitioners.

Note: further background information on next page.

Background quotes:

"We do not believe any joint agency should cover these products at this time as we consider this may be too high a regulatory burden given the level of risk posed by these products."
Steve Chadwick, MP ( Labour)
Chair of Health Select Committee
9 December 2003

"It is not reasonable to expect the Governments of New Zealand or Australia to wait any longer for a report from a select committee—a report that the Government did not call for—on something that was first decided in September 2002, 15 months ago. Governments cannot hold up agreements on that basis. What countries would deal with us if we did?"

Hon Annette King
In Parliament, 4 December 2003

"So long as health products do not cause physical harm it would seem better to leave their efficacy to the judgment of consumers… The greater likelihood is that many products will disappear from the market not because they are "unsafe" in the ordinary meaning of the word but because their manufacturer will not invest in the additional expense of meeting the regulatory red tape of a relatively small market."

New Zealand Herald
Editorial, 9 December 2003

© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Skewed Media Coverage Of Gaza

Now that he’s back as Foreign Minister, maybe Winston Peters should start reading the MFAT website which is currently celebrating the 25th anniversary of how Kiwis alerted the rest of the world to the genocide in Rwanda. How times have changed ...

In 2023, the government is clutching its pearls because senior Labour MP Damien O’Connor has dared suggest that Gaza’s civilian population - already living under apartheid and subjected to sixteen years of an illegal embargo, and now being herded together and slaughtered indiscriminately amid the destruction of their homes, schools, mosques, and hospitals - are also victims of what amounts to genocide. More

ACT: Call To Abolish Human Rights Commission

“The Human Rights Commission’s appointment of a second Chief Executive is just the latest example of a taxpayer-funded bureaucracy serving itself at the expense of delivery for New Zealanders,” says ACT MP Todd Stephenson. More

Public Housing Futures: Christmas Comes Early For Landlords

New CTU analysis of the National & ACT coalition agreement has shown the cost of returning interest deductibility to landlords is an extra $900M on top of National’s original proposal. This is because it is going to be implemented earlier and faster, including retrospective rebates from April 2023. More




InfoPages News Channels


Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.