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Health Canada shuts down lab for data falsification

By Stephen Daniells , 10-Dec-2012
Last updated on 10-Dec-2012 at 16:56 GMT

The alleged falsification of data includes some dietary supplements
The alleged falsification of data includes some dietary supplements

Health Canada has suspended the Establishment Licence of Chemi Pharmaceutical Inc. after finding falsified test results.

The data falsification was identified during an inspection of the Mississauga, Ontario-based testing facility. Health Canada said it is now verifying the nature and use of testing done by Chemi Pharmaceutical Inc. with the company's customers.

“Our survey of clients to date indicates that only a portion of the company's work involved testing of final products before they entered the Canadian market,” said the agency.

As a precaution, Health Canada has asked companies to temporarily halt sales of those products tested by Chemi Pharmaceutical until safety can be confirmed.

“To date, Health Canada has not seen any indication that the health of Canadians has been compromised,” it added.

A list of products and ingredients, including dietary supplements, that are affected can be found here: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ahc-asc/media/advisories-avis/_2012/2012_184lt-eng.php

Requests for comment from Chemi Pharmaceutical Inc via telephone went unanswered. Emails to the company's contact email bounced. 

Dry labbing

Dry labbing has been an issue that has gained national mainstream attention with a Dateline NBC exposé on the issue in March .

Dry labbing is a practice whereby research or analysis is claimed to be done, but in reality the conclusions are guessed at or copied from other sources without actually doing any analysis.

Frank Jaksch, CEO of Chromadex, spoke to NutraIngredients in 2011 and 2012 about the issue. Jaksch joined us again at the recent SupplySide West show in Las Vegas to update us on the issue: “Dry labbing has not gone away,” he said. “It seems to have actually mushroomed in certain ways, and it’s changed in certain ways.

“We’re not seeing the same blatant dry labbing that was exposed in the Dateline piece.”

“The labs that were participating in this have metamorphosed into what I would call selective dry labs, meaning that they are not necessarily as blatant a practice as the lab that was exposed, they are now doing some dry labbing and a little bit of testing and trying to make it difficult for a company to pin it on them.”

Proportion

“I don’t want to blow the whole thing out of proportion, that’s not the point, but the reason why I think it is something that should be focused on is that, although some people perceive this to be a small problem, it’s actually a very easy problem to fix.”

To watch the full interview, please click here