Leading supplements retailer General Nutrition Centers (GNC) has announced a range of initiatives designed to ensure consumers make informed choices about nutritional supplements.
The initiatives include a nationwide ID policy for products intended for adults 18 and over, a review of GNC labelling practices, and the introduction of a GNC Nutritional Supplements Bill of Rights for consumers.
"Nutritional supplements play an important health management role for millions of Americans," said Michael K. Meyers, president and CEO of GNC, which operates 5,300 retail outlets worldwide. "These industry-leading efforts underscore our commitment to educating customers about nutritional supplements and providing them with the best nutritional products."
The initiatives are based on a new GNC Nutritional Supplement Bill of Rights, which gives consumers clear information about GNC nutritional supplements. The bill encourages customers to learn more about the products they choose, said the company, including usage directions and product warnings.
The bill includes such statements as : "The customer has the right to know and understand the ingredients, usage guidelines (dosage and duration), and product potency of any GNC Nutritional Supplement prior to making a purchase," and "The customer has the right to simple, easy to understand, and consistent product labeling and language on any GNC nutritional supplement."
As part of the initiative, GNC sales associates will ID customers who appear to be under 18 years old for products intended only for use by adults.
The company is also to review its current labeling practices to ensure that they provide clear, understandable information. The Better Knowledge, Better Health, programme is being launched to provide consumers with more information about appropriate use of nutritional supplements. This will include in-store displays and access to additional information through the GNC website and in-store kiosks.
In-store signage and the ID policy will take effect in early 2003. The initiatives are part of a $20 million redesign of GNC's US stores to create a more informative and user-friendly atmosphere for customers.
Based in Pittsburgh, PA, GNC operates more than 5,300 retail outlets throughout the United States and also operates in Canada and Mexico. GNC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Dutch nutrition company Royal Numico.