Gaia Herbs invites FDA to come visit ‘any time at all’

By Asia Sherman

- Last updated on GMT

© Image courtesy of Gaia Herbs
© Image courtesy of Gaia Herbs

Related tags Transparency Fda Dietary supplements

As part of a new campaign to showcase responsible and rigorous practices in the dietary supplement industry, Gaia Herbs has extended an open invitation to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to inspect its operations.

“Gaia Herbs has always recognized and respected the role of regulating bodies like the FDA in keeping people safe,” Jim Geikie, CEO at Gaia Herbs, told NutraIngredients-USA. “While we understand the concern some have around regulations potentially restricting consumer choice, we also recognize the impact lack of transparency can have on consumers who are seeking dietary supplements to help support their wellness.”

The campaign launches with a full-page ad in The New York Times​, a one-minute video and social media content offering viewers an inside look at the Gaia farm, onsite testing laboratories and manufacturing facility in Brevard, NC.

Accentuating the positive

The campaign chose to put a positive spin on regulatory compliance, dramatizing Gaia’s commitment to transparency—not only to inspire consumer trust and confidence but promote more stringent standards across industry.

“This is a campaign about product integrity, but in a sea of negativity, we wanted to flip the narrative and focus on doing things the right way,” Geikie said. “It is important for us to shine a bright spotlight on both the current regulations and Gaia Herbs’ elevated standards to help educate consumers in what they can—and should—expect from their supplements.”

The video spot​, set against the backdrop of the Blue Ridge Mountains, is framed as a warm, light-hearted welcome from a dedicated Gaia team. Smiling employees are featured waving from the fields, pointing out the company’s regenerative practices, reserving a parking spot for inspectors, welcoming visitors into a spotless lab, opening filing cabinets “filled with years of meticulous record keeping”, and wearing protective beard nets at the factory. 

“Gaia Herbs isn’t like the other supplement companies,” a friendly voiceover narrates. “For instance, we’re inviting the FDA to come visit any time at all. Most companies would get a little itchy about an unscheduled visit from a top regulatory body, but we say: ‘When can you get here?’”

The Gaia product promise

Integral to the campaign is the Gaia product promise of potency, purity and transparency, which is published on the company’s “Meet Your Herbs”​ traceability platform.  

Geikie described it as “sort of a combination of 23andMe meets CarFax for herbs”, where users input an Herb ID found on the product packaging and access complete “seed to bottle” supply chain information from growing and harvesting to sourcing, manufacturing and testing. 

“Beyond that, there are three major certifications that we value above others: Regenerative Organic Certified farm in Brevard, NC; ISO certification for 22 of our lab methods; and B-Corp certification for our sustainability and governance commitment,” he added. 

An invite to industry

Gaia says that what is most important is that consumers have confidence in what they are buying and invites other companies that love transparency to join the cause​. 

“We do believe that people deserve more wellness and supplement companies that are inspection-ready on all aspects of their business subject to oversight, and we welcome like-minded organizations to reach us at prb@tnvnureof.pbz​,” Geike said.

As to whether FDA will take Gaia up on its invitation, he said that FDA is of course not waiting for an invitation to come visit and has in fact audited Gaia every two to three years, the last time in 2022. 

“We received no 483 [inspectional] observations and only two minor recommendations, which only gives us the opportunity to improve,” he said. “We know they’ll be back and are ready for them when they are.”

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