Supplement Marketing Called 'Out of Control'


The marketing of dietary supplements and herbal remedies--a $3.2-billion industry--is "out of control today," said Dr. David Kessler, former head of the Food and Drug Administration. Kessler, who served as FDA commissioner from 1990 to 1997 and is now dean of the Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn., said a loophole in 1994 congressional legislation allowed for "an explosion, an exponential growth in dietary supplements sales" without any coinciding oversight. The FDA does not regulate herbal products, which have grown in popularity and include such common remedies as echinacea, garlic and ginkgo biloba.

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