HL Deb 18 October 1999 vol 605 c101WA
Earl Baldwin of Bewdley

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What was the outcome of the discussions on the regulation of herbal remedies at the meeting of the European Union Pharmaceutical Committee on 27 and 28 September. [HL4188]

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath

The Pharmaceutical Committee discussed a paper prepared by the European Commission which asked for the views of European Union member states on the possible creation of a category of medicines where the normal requirement for medicines to demonstrate efficacy might be replaced by evidence of traditional use. There was agreement that the creation of such a regulatory category could help to improve the regulatory framework for herbal medicines and should be investigated further. The United Kingdom, through the Medicines Control Agency, was one of a number of member states which offered to join an Expert Group which the Commission will be forming to help develop the concept further for discussion at a future meeting of the Pharmaceutical Committee.