Brussels bid to halt High Street sales of ginseng and aloe vera. Traditional herbal remedies could vanish from Britain’s shops under a European scheme to make them illegal to sell without a licence.
(The Express, 11 March 1999, p1)
There is no attempt to ban herbal remedies. It is important to ensure the safety, quality and efficacy of products available to the public, and to guarantee that claims made about their effectiveness are accurate. There is concern, even among practitioners, that some herbal medicines can be dangerous if not used properly, which is why new licensing regulations for herbal and other health products are being introduced by the Government, giving effect to an EU Directive dating back to 1965. According to the Directive, any substance or combination of substances presented or administered for treating or preventing disease in human beings or animals should be regarded as a medicinal product. Ready-prepared medicinal products may only be placed on the market of a Member State if their quality, safety and efficacy have been proven in a marketing authorisation procedure.