Jarrow Responds to Chicago Tribune Article on GMPS

LOS ANGELES - August 2, 2012 -The recent Chicago Tribune article, "Manufacturing troubles widespread, FDA inspections show" (7/1/12) vilifies the entire dietary supplement industry with skewed statistics and distorted ''facts.'' Irresponsibly, the article includes inflammatory and statistically unsupportable quotes from Dr. Daniel Fabricant, FDA's Director of Dietary Supplement Programs, who calls the industry he used to represent "downright scary." He claims that at least one half of supplement companies are "failing on their face" in terms of GMP compliance, when there is absolutely no factual basis for the wildly inflated figures.

The Tribune recklessly cites as a prime example of supplement woes a four-year old case involving a supplement called Total Body that contained a toxic amount of selenium. But the Tribune omits the key points:  this was an isolated case involving a criminally fraudulent lab and a subsequent cover-up—a matter totally unrepresentative of the industry as a whole. The Agency merely issued a few consumer advisories only after a company-initiated recall by Total Body; and then soon closed the case, with no investigation of the supplier, the blending/bottling firm, or the lab, and no appropriate regulatory action whatsoever. It is ironic that at the time, FDA utilized very few of its regulatory powers and did not feel the case was serious enough to act in a meaningful way, but now--years later--uses this very same case as its prime example of why the industry is dangerous.  If Congress knew the full story, it would be the FDA under scrutiny, not the supplement industry.

Also in the article, Dr. Fabricant offers a dire prediction of a soon-to-be major "public health catastrophe" with supplements, and the Tribune again fails to challenge that remark. Facts show that supplements have an extraordinary safety record when compared to many other product categories regulated by FDA. Unlike countless injuries and deaths per year in connection with foods, drugs and medical devices, except for cases of gross over-use of ephedra (contrary to explicit label directions), there has not been a major health incident involving supplements in the 18 years since DSHEA!  Pathetically, the only “supplement” “catastrophe" the Tribune offers concerns a case where antifreeze (imported from China) instead of sweet syrup (the intended food ingredient) was added to a drug in Panama, not in the U.S.

"In sounding a false alarm on dietary supplement safety, Trine Tsouderos and The Chicago Tribune have maligned an industry and misled their readers," said Jarrow Formulas' Food and Drug attorneys Scott Polisky and Susan Brienza. "The reporting was sloppy and slanted with a clearintent to present distorted facts and fallacies to support a 'loaded' agenda."

Jarrow Formulas, based in Los Angeles, is a formulator and marketer of superior nutritional supplements. The company was founded in 1977, and today markets its products in the United States and throughout the world. Jarrow Formulas' goal is to promote optimal health based on sound scientific research data. The company's complete line of nutritional products includes vitamins, minerals, probiotics, standardized herbal concentrates, amino acids, enzymes and enteral nutrition products. For more information, please visit:

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The Jarrow Formulas response:

The Chicago Tribune Article:

Rory Lipsky
Marketing Director, Jarrow Formulas, Inc.
(310) 204-6936
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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