Industry Members Urge Congress to Pass Designer Anabolic Steroid Control Act, Oppose Dietary Supplement Labeling Act

More than 70 representatives of the dietary supplements industry met with members of Congress this week as part of CRN's "Day on the Hill."

More than 70 representatives of the dietary supplements industry met with members of Congress this week about the supplements business and urged lawmakers to pass the Designer Anabolic Steroid Control Act (DASCA), introduced by Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Orrin Hatch (R-UT) in February. The meetings were organized by the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN; Washington, DC), as part of the dietary supplement association’s 11th annual “Day on the Hill” event.

The Designer Anabolic Steroid Control Act of 2014, which would amend the Controlled Substances Act, would effectively broaden the list of substances considered to be anabolic steroids. This in turn would make it easier for enforcement agencies to bring criminal and civil actions against companies who spike dietary supplements with illegal drugs.

In February, CRN stated, “Among the improvements brought about by DASCA will be new guidelines for DEA to address products that are ‘substantially similar’ to anabolic steroids and that have been illegally marketed to promote muscle growth. In addition, DASCA will place new anabolic steroids on the DEA Controlled Substance List, and will change the criteria for placing additional anabolic steroids on the list going forward.”

Also, CRN added, “DASCA will also allow DEA to respond faster to stop those criminals who create new anabolic substances closely resembling listed ones, but tweaked just enough that they are not identical to their flagged counterparts.”

In May, CRN’s CEO and president Steve Mister, said that “anabolic steroids have no business being sold as supplements…Anabolic steroids are not dietary supplements.”

CRN and industry members also urged lawmakers to oppose the Dietary Supplement Labeling Act introduced in 2013 by Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). This bill would require pre-registration of dietary supplement facilities with FDA, including registering product descriptions, ingredient lists, and copies of labels, and updating FDA on any changes.

CRN has called this bill “misguided” because it“contains duplicative requirements that already exist under current law that gives FDA the proper legal authority to take action to protect consumers and maintain safety standards.” Instead, the association urges FDA to maximize its existing regulatory authority to enforce against industry outliers breaking the law.

CRN said it was pleased by the high level of industry participation in this year’s “Day on the Hill” event. Director of government relations Ingrid Lebert said this edition of “Day on the Hill” saw the highest number of industry participants to date. The participants, who were all CRN members, met with nearly 60 congressional offices.

 

Jennifer Grebow
Editor-in-Chief
Nutritional Outlook magazine jennifer.grebow@ubm.com