The French agency responsible for policing the country’s food supplements market told NutraIngredients today the controversial stimulant DMAA has been prioritised by its 2500 agents in a nationwide crackdown.
The move comes as Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) today confirmed that DMAA has been officially shifted to its poisons list.
A French Directorate General of Competition, Consumption and Fraud Repression (DGCCRF) spokesperson said the 2500 agents are, “working on the DMAA case right now.”
A further 70 agents are scouring online retailers in search of predominantly pre-workout products containing DMAA – a stimulant regulators around the world are acting against over health and sourcing concerns.
Action has already been taken in Denmark, Finland, Sweden, the UK, Ireland, the US, Canada and New Zealand.
The spokesperson said DMAA (methylhexaneamine/1,3-dimethylamylamine) had never been approved for use in France for food supplements via EU Novel Foods or any other legal avenues.
They said they had not seen any French adverse event reports but the agency had been sent some by Scandinavian authorities.
The TGA issued a statement confirming DMAA will be added to its Appendix C Poisons List from August 8 after it received advice from the Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling (ACMS) and public consultation.
“This means that it is a substance of such danger to public health as to warrant prohibition of sale, supply and use.”
The TGA said enforcement responsibility now lay with state and territory governments.
The agency noted that consumption of DMAA has been linked with adverse events like high blood pressure, headaches, vomiting, cerebral haemorrhage, stroke and death.
The biggest player in the DMAA area – US-based USPLabs – is already producing DMAA-free versions of its popular Jack3D pre-workout product as the global regulatory net closes.
The TGA action was big news with local media. The West Australian reported of a 45-year-old mine worker whose death in 2011 by cerebral haemorrhage is being linked to DMAA he poured into a beer.
DMAA products have been used widely by Australia’s mine workers, along with others in other industries where fatigue and sleep deprivation are issues, as it goes undetected in urine tests.
While it may pass such tests, it is banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) which employs much stricter testing protocols for the world's elite athletes.
DMAA is the substance responsible for more positive doping tests than any other over the past couple of years. It was responsible for 123 doping bans in 2010 alone.