Did you know that 8 in 10 Canadians turn to natural health products (NHPs) as a source of preventive protection, relief from reoccurring symptoms, and to enhance general well-being. With such high consumer interest, the natural health industry is growing faster than ever before, making it vital for producers to ensure their products are legitimate and truly serve the best interests of their customers. At SinoVeda, we not only believe in producing natural products that stand up to their promise, but providing our customers with peace of mind through transparency and legitimacy. To help explain the process of creating a natural health product, as well as some key indication that an NHP is safe for use, please follow our quick guide below.
What is a Natural Health Product?
While the natural health product market is incredibly vast and full of diverse offerings, consumer awareness is important when it comes to protecting yourself and ensuring you select the right products for your specific needs. In Canada, the term ‘natural health product’ is used to refer to:
- Vitamins and minerals
- Herbal remedies
- Homeopathic medicines
- Traditional medicines such as those found in Chinese medicines or Ayurvedic practices
- Other products such as amino acids and essential fatty acids
Many of these items are sourced from plants, but can also be made from animal derivatives, microorganisms, and marine sources. While the specific method of consumption will vary depending on the purpose of the product, NHPs are frequently packaged as tablets, capsules, tinctures, creams, ointments, and more.
Regulation and Standards
Canada is a global leader in the regulation of NHPs, and holds all companies as well as products to strict standards meant to ensure they are safe for public consumption. Before a product is allowed to be sold, Health Canada assesses the viability of the product; should the product be deemed acceptable, it will be issued a Natural Product Number (NPN) that is entered into a searchable database that contains vital information about components and production.
Proving Legitimacy and Safety for Consumers
A large part of a product being approved for sale relies on the manufacturer’s ability to sufficiently prove that any claims they make are substantiated. This requires the producer to submit verified evidence that supports their position, as well as the safety and efficiency of the product. Such evidence may include clinical trial data, references to published studies, scientific journals, pharmacopoeias, and other traditional resources.
Look for the License
In order to sell a natural health product in Canada, both the selling company and manufacturer must have the appropriate licenses. Sellers must have a product license, and the manufacturer must have a site license. Both licenses help to ensure the safety of the product, and also require the producer to maintain proper distribution, storage, and delivery practices. To receive a product license, companies must submit an application that includes information like:
- Medicinal and non-medicinal ingredients
- Source material
- Recommended uses
- Recommended duration of use
- Any known side effects or adverse reactions
Once a product’s legitimacy and manufacturing practices have been verified by Health Canada, a Natural Product Number, or NPN, may be issued, signifying that the product is ready for sale within Canada. For consumers wishing to ensure the safety and validity of a prospective purchase, an NPN can provide reassurance that the product falls under the guidelines maintained by the Government of Canada.
A New Take on Tradition
With the growing interest in natural remedies being used to supplement the typical “Western” approach to medicine, natural health product development is steadily on the rise. While you should always consult your physician before beginning any alternative form of treatment, used correctly, natural health products can be a safe, efficient, resource to add to your personal health journey.
SinoVeda is a leader in making nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals from natural sources. For more information about our products, visit our shop, or contact our team today!