“You can expect to see empty shelves when shopping for natural health products in the future as Health Canada's red tape strangles the industry. Over 75 percent of brands may pull products from the market due to excessive regulations,” reads a comment provided by Alive Publishing Group Inc., described as North America’s largest and most trusted natural health publisher.
Yes..., it seems that Health Canada and the Government of Canada are doing another "mistake" by banning natural and organic ingredients in Canada. They feel that Canadians shouldn't use natural products anymore, so they proposed a bill to ban anything and everything natural.
Recent decisions by Health Canada and the Federal Government to attach additional fees to health food products and supplements are putting producers, suppliers, and retail outlets in jeopardy and probably out of business.
However, the 2023 Federal Budget, as part of the Self-Care Framework Initiative, included a move by Health Canada to include NHPs under a new structure. Changes to the industry would include heightened requirements for consumer information, changes to packaging, and ultimately increased fees assessed by the government to align with other therapeutic products.
“Health Canada wants to impose increased licensing fees on our suppliers, and what that means for retailers is that it will put smaller and medium suppliers out of business. They won’t be able to compete. There will be a lack of choice for our customers, and it will drive up prices dramatically for companies that survive, as they will have to increase their costs to make ends meet.”
The Canadian Health Food Association is a national body that supports producers and retailers and works with Health Canada to support the regulation and safety of NHPs that range from beauty products and toothpaste to organic health supplements. The organization has expressed concerns about Health Canada’s licensing fees, ostensibly in place for cost recovery of its heightened scrutiny. The concern is not about existing regulations, and the industry is highly regulated. The contention is that the fees are simply too much for industry participants to bear, says Jules Gorham, director of regulatory affairs and policy for the CHFA.
“The cost recovery fees as proposed will be extremely difficult for small and medium-sized businesses to afford. The right to sell yearly fee, the application fees that will go up to over $58,000/product. The fees are very expensive, and they will have the outcome of one of two things. Either the cost of products will go up greatly for the Canadian consumer, or brands will simply have to pull products off the market altogether. Canadians will no longer have access to variety and be able to make choices about their self-care.”
The Association is also concerned about new regulations driving consumers to overseas and unregulated markets through online marketing.
“Protecting the health and safety of Canadians is a top priority that the natural health product industry and Health Canada share,” Gorham says. “However, by causing the Canadian brands that are highly regulated and validated scientifically by Health Canada to pull natural products from the market, we are going to cause the consumer to have to find those products that they love somewhere else.
What this means for Vooqo:
We, as a small family-owned business, offer some of the most exquisite all-natural and organic formulas developed in more than 10 years. More exactly - 436 products.
Multiplying that with $58,000 per product means paying a recovery fee of $25,288,000 per year to the government of Canada: so you - our customers be able to use quality, natural products. This fee is not asked for synthetic-based products.
Steps that we've taken:
Having this information for a while now we've decided to make Vooqo available worldwide. Setting up warehouses and production facilities in Europe, Asia, and North America will hopefully allow us to keep our products available to everyone.
Some of our Canadian customers considered this step unnecessary, some believed that we were brought by some other company, and some may be interested in the product only if ships from Canada. Some believed that we went crazy :).
We believe that quality matters and we will take any step necessary to preserve our product quality and price - and to keep offering the most advanced, all-natural formulas that everyone deserves.
You can get involved and protect your rights here: https://www.saveoursupplements.ca/changing-regulations