Participants included industry and regulatory officials keen to learn more about regulatory systems in place in the region as well as North America and other parts of the world.
“The workshop gave regulators and industry representatives the opportunity to debate the key regulatory issues in the region and the potential for change in the light of international regulations and practice,” said David Pineda Ereño, IADSA’s manager of regulatory affairs.
Latin American focus
The event was the second IADSA forum to focus on Latin America this year, after an early May gathering of more than 100 figures in Mexico City looked into similar issues.
As well as highlighting how regulatory systems had evolved in different regions around the world, participants were given updates on the latest regional and global harmonisation initiatives.
The status quo in the US was explained including the passing of recent adverse event reporting (AER) and good manufacturing practices (GMP) regulations.
Speakers included Dr Maria Luz Martínez from Argentina’s National Administration of Food, Dr Ana Claudia de Araújo from the National Agency of Health Surveillance in Brazil and Luisa Kipreos from the Chilean Ministry of Health.
“Latin America is a highly complex region in terms of dietary supplement regulation and many significant problems exist for marketing products,” Pineda said.
“Change in regulations will take time, but IADSA is committed to helping support local associations through the exchange of information and provision of solutions to create balanced regulation across the region.”
IADSA has for several years focused on improving and harmonizing the regulatory environments in developing regions such as Latin America, Asia and Africa.
IADSA can count among its 50+ members only three Latin American trade associations – in Mexico, Columbia and Peru – a situation the organization expects to shift after the completion of the two meetings.
It has been busy working with the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) to harmonize regulations there and conducted a symposium there in June that was attended by all 10 ASEAN members including Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines.
There is momentum to harmonise health claims and other regulations across the ten countries that form the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and IADSA and its member associations are heavily involved in this work.
Other goals include the promotion of trade, reduction in production costs and education of consumers.
The Belgian headquartered group is an accredited international non-governmental organization (INGO) and has influenced international rule-making bodies such as the United Nations food regulations arm, the Codex Alimentarius.