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Industry News
February 2, 2010

Vitamin Retailer News
Enzymedica Lowers Free Shipping Requirement
Enzymedica, Inc. (Port Charlotte, FL) announced that it has lowered its order minimum to 10 bottles or $100 to qualify for free shipping.

The lowered minimums are a financially friendly option for customers watching their budgets or increasing their stock as the economy rebounds. Prices for orders that do not meet the new requirements will not change, retaining a $15 shipping fee.

“In an economic cycle when many manufacturers have announced price increases to account for fuel and other surcharges, these generously lowered minimums will allow our customers greater flexibility,” explained Scott Sensenbrenner, Enzymedica’s CEO. “Rather than holding out to fill their shelves, they can place orders more frequently, keeping retail inventory full, making shelves more attractive.”

For more information, call (888) 918-1118 or visit www.enzymedica.com.

Overweight Adults 70+ Given Advantage Over “Normal” Weight Adults
Adults aged 70 years or older who are classified as overweight are less likely to die over a 10 year period than adults who are in the “normal” weight range, according to a new study published in the Journal of The American Geriatrics Society.

Researchers looked at data taken over a decade among more than 9,200 Australian men and women aged 70-75 at the beginning of the study, who were assessed for their health and lifestyle as part of a study into healthy aging. The paper sheds light on the situation in Australia, which is ranked the third most obese country, behind the United States and the United Kingdom.

The study began in 1996 and recruited 4,677 men and 4,563 women. The participants were followed for 10 years or until their death, whichever was sooner, and factors such as lifestyle, demographics and health were measured. The research uncovered that mortality risk was lowest for participants with a BMI classified as overweight, with the risk of death reduced by 13 percent compared with normal weight participants. The benefits were only seen in the overweight category not in those people who are obese.

“Concerns have been raised about encouraging apparently overweight older people to lose weight and as such the objective of our study was to examine the major unresolved question of, ‘what level of BMI is associated with the lowest mortality risk in older people?’” said lead researcher Leon Flicker, of the University of Western Australia. “These results add evidence to the claims that The World Health Organization (WHO) BMI thresholds for overweight and obese are overly restrictive for older people. It may be timely to review the BMI classification for older adults.”

In those participants who died before the conclusion of the study, the researchers concluded that the type of disease which caused their death—for example heart disease or cancer—did not affect the level of protection being overweight had. To remove any risk of bias in participants with illnesses that caused them to lose weight, and also increased their risk of dying, the researchers contrasted subjects who were relatively healthy compared with those who had major chronic diseases or smoked and found no apparent differences in the BMI/mortality relationship.

While the same benefit in being overweight was true for men and women, being sedentary doubled the risk of death for women, whereas it only increased the risk by a quarter in men.

“Our study suggests that those people who survive to age 70 in reasonable health have a different set of risks and benefits associated with the amount of body fat to younger people, and these should be reflected in BMI guidelines,” concluded Flicker.

Organic Products Retailer News
Sustainable Agriculture Standards Committee Accepts New Members
After a two-month application submission and review period, Leonardo Academy announced the appointment of seven new members to the SCS-001 Sustainable Agriculture Standards Committee: Steve Flick, Show Me Energy Cooperative (Producer); Bill Norman, National Cotton Council (User); Kindley Walsh Lawlor, Gap Inc. (User); Andrew Manale, Soil and Water Conservation Society/ USEPA (Environmentalist); LaRhea Pepper, Organic Exchange (Environmentalist); Dr. John Fagan, Earth Open Source/Global ID Group Inc. (Environmentalist); and Douglas Constance, Sam Houston State University (General Interest).

These individuals will be filling seats vacated by Hans Brand of B Flowers, Frans Wielemaker of Dole Fresh Fruit International, Colleen Kohlsaat of Levi Strauss Company, Suzy Friedman of Environmental Defense Fund, Ron Strochlic of the California Institute of Rural Studies, David Pimentel of Cornell University and John Kukoly of QAI-SAI Global.

The objective of the National Sustainable Agriculture Standard initiative is to establish a comprehensive, continual improvement framework and common set of economic, environmental and social metrics by which to determine whether an agricultural crop has been produced in a sustainable manner. With participation from a broad diversity of stakeholders from across the entire agricultural supply chain, this historic effort has the potential to strengthen all types of agricultural production in the US, in addition to rural communities and the ability of those communities to positively impact the environment, through science-based, performance-oriented criteria that meet the goals of sustainability.

Naturity Launches Plant & Green for NJ Trees
Naturity LLC (Bayville, NJ) recently launched Plant & Green™, a new environmental program partnership with the New Jersey Tree Foundation.

For every customer order placed, Naturity will purchase a tree, which will be planted by the New Jersey Tree Foundation. The purchased trees will help promote the greening initiatives of the foundation in New Jersey schools and communities.

“We did some research before we selected an organization partner. There are several out there but the New Jersey Tree Foundation is a grassroots organization with a big emphasis on educating our youth. We saw this as a differentiator, plus they were local and we believe in thinking globally and acting locally,” said Anysia Kiel, Naturity’s managing member.

The New Jersey Tree Foundation is dedicated to the promotion, development and improvement of forestry programs in cities, neighborhoods and schools. Through tree planting, volunteerism, education and community outreach, it is able to assist numerous communities in improving their environment and quality of life.

Plant & Green is Naturity’s second environmental program and joins Recycle Naturity—the company’s container recycling program, which states that for every five containers sent back to the company and recycled, Naturity will email a customer a $15 gift certificate good toward the purchase of any of its products.

For more information, call (732) 678-7112 or visit www.naturity.net.

Nutrition Industry Executive News
AHPA, ABC Members Questioned on NDI Status
Several American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) and American Botanical Council (ABC) members have been contacted by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) regarding information about the marketing of herbal products with an emphasis on new dietary ingredient (NDI) status, according to NutraIngredients-USA.

The letters focus on the likes of St. Johns wort, chamomile flower tincture, echinacea root 4:1 powdered extract and oils of peppermint leaf, ginger root and fennel seed, and are signed by the GAO’s managing director of forensic audits and investigations, Gregory D. Kutz.

AHPA said the GAO letters had been issued as recently as January 18. Each company had received a similar letter that requested information such as details of extraction method; evidence that the addressees’ specifically identified dietary supplement product was marketed in the US prior to the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA); evidence that the identified product contains only dietary ingredients that have been present in the food supply as an article used for food in a form in which the food has not been chemically altered; and a copy of such documentation as has been provided to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) showing that there is a history of use or other evidence of safety, establishing that the dietary ingredient when used under the conditions recommended or suggested in the labeling of the dietary supplement will reasonably be expected to be safe.

The letters state that the GAO is investigating the area after a request from the Senate Select Committee on Aging. AHPA said it was looking into why such a request had been made by the Committee in the first place.

ABC Founder and Executive Director Mark Blumenthal said while many of the ingredients under review had been mandated as old dietary ingredients (ODIs), there was debate about newer extracts from the same plants—especially as the FDA was yet to issue guidance on the matter.

Such discrepancies may have motivated the GAO to move into an area that is typically the domain of the FDA. Blumenthal speculated about how such information may be used.

“There are some such as Congressman Henry Waxman who are vocal opponents of DSHEA and seeking to build a base of information that may be used to attack DSHEA,” he said in a statement, noting at least three ABC members that had contacted him with concerns about the letters. “The problem is that NDI is open and ambiguous.

NPA Offers GMP Guidance at Trade Shows
To help professionals in the natural products industry understand the requirements, address compliance to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) good manufacturing practices rule (GMPs) and prepare for regulatory inspections, Natural Products Association (NPA) announced its schedule of GMP certification seminars, held in conjunction with five industry trade shows and conventions around the country. The first session will be held March 11-12 at the Expo West trade show in Anaheim, CA.

More than 1,000 industry representatives from more than 800 companies have attended this popular and informative one-and-a-half-day educational seminar, exploring the challenges of the regulation and gaining valuable insight on addressing compliance to FDA GMPs, said NPA.

The advance-level course provides over 12 hours in GMP coursework and is intended to be a resource for anyone whose job responsibility requires a comprehensive understanding of the FDA GMP rule for dietary supplements, including management and regulatory affairs, quality control and assurance, production and laboratory personnel.

Seminar presenters include Cindy Beehner, president of QDS Consulting, in addition to Aaron Secrist, president of Quality By Design Consulting Group, and NPA staff, and bring over 40 years combined experience in addressing FDA regulations, especially in the area of GMPs and dietary supplements. The seminar agenda will include an overview of the rule, a comprehensive discussion of specific FDA GMP requirements and tips and guidance on ensuring one’s business is ready for FDA visits and inspections.

The FDA is conducting GMP inspections for companies with more than 20 full-time employees and will begin GMP inspections for smaller companies beginning July 2010. At that point, all companies involved with the manufacturing, packaging, labeling and distribution of dietary supplements will be covered by 21 CFR 111.

Visit www.npainfo.org/gmpseminars for more dates, locations, costs and registration.

VRM, Inc.| 431 Cranbury Road, Suite C | East Brunswick, NJ 08816 | Phone: (732) 432-9600 | Fax: (732) 432-9288