Hahahahahahahaa this just off the wires from the MHRA at 00:01am. Busted! Just remember, yer old uncle Ben was here speaking the truth when Channel 4 and the rest were loving her. Surprisingly vicious for an MHRA press release, I have to say. I guess they want to be taken seriously as policing this kind of nonsense, given recent events (on which more soon, heh)â€¦ Anyway, here’s what the MHRA sent out on the wires:
MHRA order removal of Gillian McKeithâ€™s illegal products
Dr Gillian McKeithâ€™s organisation has had to detox its own products after MHRA officers discovered it was advertising and selling goods without legal authorisation whilst making medicinal claims about their efficacy. Dr McKeithâ€™s products, â€˜Fast Formula Wild Pinkâ€™ for women and â€˜Fast Formula Hornyâ€™ for men promised to deliver wonders for all in the bedroom.
The MHRA determined that both products were medicines because of the presence of some well-known medicinal herbs and because of the claims being made by Dr McKeithâ€™s organisation. Only licensed medicines may be advertised to the public.
David Carter, Manager of the Medicines Borderline Section said â€œCompanies who place products on the market have a clear duty to ensure that those products comply with all relevant legislation. As Dr McKeithâ€™s organisation had already been made aware of the requirements of medicines legislation in previous years there was no reason for all the products not to be compliant with the law. The MHRA has a comprehensive website with information on the legislation it administers, including the law on herbal products. Furthermore, free advice on the likely status of products is available from staff in the Medicines Borderline Section. It would have been a very simple matter for them to have sought our opinion.â€
Date: 21st November 2006
Time: 00.01 HOURS 21/11/06
Subject: Gillian Mc Keith products removed
Contact: Press Office 020 7084 #### #####@mhra.gsi.gov.uk
Out of hours 07770 ### ###
EDIT McKeith Fights Back:
After the MHRA press release, the following appeared on McKeith’s website.
“About Wild Pink Yam and Horny Goat Weed Supplements
Due to the new EU licensing laws regarding herbal products, and after extensive consultation with the MHRA, McKeith Research Ltd has withdrawn two supplement products â€“ Wild Pink Yam and Horny Goat Weed Capsules. The new EU ruling affects a wide range of herbal products currently on sale in the UK, and McKeith Research Ltd is willing to comply with all new regulations as they work closely with the MHRA to ensure that products comply with the new licensing specifications.
She made the same odd statements about EU regulations to the Herald newspaper, and mixed it up with what reads to me like a healthy dose of retro 1990s Sun-style “EU calls chocolate vegelate/straight banana regulations/yoghurt banning” tabloid euroscepticism.
“It’s obvious that the EU bureaucrats are clearly concerned that people in the UK are having too much good sex.”
So needless to say I contacted the MHRA to find out if this EU stuff was true.
The press office were very helpful and told me: “This has nothing to do with new EU regulations.” And just to be absolutely clear: “They were never legal for sale in the UK.” They also point out that thereâ€™s no excuse for not knowing about the regulations, and that, rather helpfully ( in case any of you are thinking of setting up in business) the MHRAâ€™s Medicines Borderline Section offers free advice on the phone.
I asked them to put this in an email as well, just to be belt and braces.
So, the MHRA say: “The information on the McKeith website is incorrect. The Wild Pink Yam and Horny Goat Weed products marketed by McKeith Research Ltd were never legal for sale in the UK. The Medicines Act 1968 contains an exemption from licensing for herbal remedies but only in certain, closely defined circumstances. The McKeith products did not meet the terms of the exemption as they both had written recommendations.”
Interestingly the Health Freedom Movement, campaigning against EU vitamin pill labelling regulations, recruited eurosceptic right-wingers like John Redwood MP to speak at their rallies.