The range to be sold in the UK and Ireland will include Mega Men Performance & Vitality, Ultra Mega Wellness, Vitapak, Total Lean slimming range and Herbal Plus.
GNC’s ‘Herbal Plus’ range has recently been hit by allegations of adulteration and mislabeling, sparking several lawsuits across the US.
The affected supplements were St John’s Wort, Gingko Biloba, Ginseng, Ecchinacea and Saw Palmetto but the UK and Irish distributers could not confirm whether they would sell these products in particular.
GNC has said that the decision to expand to the UK and Ireland comes as part of a “re-evaluation of international distribution opportunities.”
It has not yet said when distribution will begin, but has confirmed that sales in the UK will be through on-line e-commerce site, Discount Supplements. In Ireland it will sell through national chain based in Dublin, The Health Shop.
GNC was issued a ‘cease and desist’ order by the New York Attorney General last week and ordered to stop selling certain Herbal Plus supplements after DNA tests found that five out of the six samples taken did not contain the labeled substance or contained other non-listed ingredients.
Industry experts have since questioned the appropriateness of the DNA testing used to verify the content of the supplements, while GNC has said in a statement via its website that its products are rigorously tested using ‘generally accepted’ and ‘industry-wide’ standards.
"GNC is confident that its response will demonstrate that the five products in question are fully compliant, safe and properly labeled and is hopeful that the Attorney General’s staff will promptly reach the same conclusion," said the company.
The nutrition company has over 8000 retail locations worldwide and sells its products both through company-owned retail stores, international franchises and e-commerce partnerships.