ASMI welcomes TGA’s new Food-Medicine Guidance Tool

01 August 2014

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1 August 2014 - The Australian Self Medication Industry (ASMI) today welcomed the new Food-Medicine lnterface guidance materials published by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) on its website.

The TGA worked collaboratively with Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ), the Federal Department of Health and State and Territory food authorities to develop the materials, which provide clarity around the regulatory interface between some foods and medicines.

The explanatory materials produced by the TGA includes an interactive Food-Medicine lnterface Guidance Tool which includes a series of questions to help sponsors and consumers determine whether a product is likely to be a therapeutic good.
ASMI Director Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Steve Scarff said: "The TGA's new Guidance Tool will be a great help to sponsors who are working at the interface of foods and medicine. There is considerable uncertainty about product classification at this juncture so the tool will provide greater clarity.

"Last week ASMI and the TGA held a workshop for ASMI members regarding the new Guidance Tool. The TGA discussed the issues around the food and medicine interface and demonstrated the new Guidance Tool, providing some practical examples.

"The workshop was helpful in highlighting the key issues at the interface and reinforced that there may still exist some uncertainty between foods and medicines which will have to be closely examined on an individual case by case basis," said Mr Scarff.

About ASMI: The Australian Self Medication Industry (ASMI) is the peak body representing sponsors of non-prescription medicines - over-the-counter (OTC) and complementary medicines. Its members make up 85 per cent of the $4bn self care market. Membership totals 60 companies and ASMI members employ approximately 18,000 people with exports estimated at $1.2 billion annually. ASMI's mission is to promote better health through responsible self care. This means ensuring that safe and effective self care products are readily available to all Australians at a reasonable cost. ASMI works to encourage responsible use by consumers and an increasing role for cost-effective self-medication products as part of the broad national health strategy.

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