Health Canada is set to crack down on misleading or unproven claims made by manufacturers of natural health products, cosmetics and OTC drugs, according to a report published by The Globe and Mail. New legislation is currently under consultation until October 24.
The regulatory body is planning to usher in legislation that would group manufacturers of OTC drugs, natural health products and cosmetics together under one regulatory framework. Products would be classified as ‘low’, ‘moderate’ or ‘high’ risk according to their ingredients.
Those in the former category, which would include vitamins and cosmetics, would no longer need to be licensed, but will have to meet quality standards and will be prohibited from making disease treatment or prevention claims on product labels.
Those deemed of moderate or high risk would be assessed by Health Canada and manufacturers would be required to back up any health claims with scientific evidence.
“Health Canada, as a science-based regulator, wants to make sure that Canadians can trust that a standard has been met when we authorize a claim,” explained the regulator.
The body is also hoping to gain new powers to issue mandatory recalls of products found to be unsafe and to usher in more punitive fines for companies found to be breaking the law.