Saturday, 23 April 2011

Stop the Traditional Herbal Medicinal Products Directive

This is the second time within a week that I've presented a petition on the Traditional Herbal Medicinal Products Directive that will come into force on 1 May. This directive will make it illegal to sell any herbal medicine without registering it. The official version assures the strongest players on the market:
competitive advantages exist for manufacturers with established high-quality products: in the registration process itself and also in obtaining a substantial market share.
Very few herbal remedies have been approved so far. A list of remedies approved up till 22 April can be found here

This directive is not about protecting us. It allows the government to prosecute people for the possession of simple remedies that can be exploited for gain by pharmaceutical companies that can afford the registration, approved R&D procedures and produce drugs that are more expensive and less effective than the herbs on which they are based. As Heidi Stevenson points out here, using marijuana to illustrate, the only way to sell pharmaceutical derivatives is to criminalise citizens for using marijuana itself. This model will be replicated other herbs, with THMPD easing the way.

This directive is about concentrating access to remedies of choice in the hands of those already financially powerful enough to push others out of the market. It's about denying people the benefits of natural remedies at source and offering expensive and adulterated versions of these remedies developed for a commercial market.

Please sign, and encourage your friends to sign and circulate this petition.This is an audacious assault on the freedom of everyone in Europe to use natural remedies: it has nothing to do with the protection of health and everything to do with protecting global pharmaceutical interests. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Using police to enforce a Big Pharma medication agenda is a violation of civil rights (and a waste of good cops)