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Industry News
February 16, 2012

Vitamin Retailer News
NOW Foods Announces Accelerated Completion of Manufacturing Facility

NOW Foods (Bloomingdale, IL) has announced an accelerated completion date for the second phase of its new 130,000-square-foot West Coast distribution and manufacturing facility in Sparks, NV. Phase two features installation of equipment and related building improvements required to complete the manufacturing portion of its local operation. Due to the accelerated timeline for the manufacturing operation, NOW Foods also announced it will begin hiring for the newly created manufacturing, management and chemist jobs beginning in March 2012.

The full-time jobs being created with phase two of the project will include manufacturing management, skilled machine operators, chemists, as well as some warehouse and general labor, with multiple shift options, the company stated in a press release. Within 18 months, NOW Foods expects to hire 100 employees in northern Nevada for the manufacturing operation, along with additional hires for its distribution operation. NOW Foods currently operates a distribution facility at Sparks, NV, which opened in 2003.

Originally scheduled to be completed in 2014, NOW Foods worked closely with United Construction Company (UCC) to expedite the development of phase two of the project, moving the completion date to the third quarter of 2012. Phase one of the project that includes the warehouse/distribution facility built by UCC, is scheduled to be completed in March 2012.

Once the manufacturing improvements are complete in the third quarter of 2012, NOW Foods will have the ability to manufacture and ship its products regionally, versus shipping all products from its Mid-West U.S. operation, creating a more efficient and sustainable business model. NOW Foods’ manufacturing facility in Sparks, NV will prevent the need for off-shore manufacturing of products to meet the demands of NOW Foods growing customer base.

The new facility consists of 70,000 square feet of warehousing and distribution, 50,000 square feet of manufacturing, 6,000 square feet of office space and 4,000 square feet of cooler/freezer space. The project was designed to cGMP (current good manufacturing practices) pharmaceutical standards. NOW Foods will pursue USGBC LEED Silver Certification for the new Sparks facility by meeting or exceeding the local development and green building standards.

For more information, call (888) 669-3663 or visit www.nowfoods.com.

Proposition 65 Settlement Approved for Omega-3 Products

An agreement was approved and entered into the California Superior Court on February 1 between 30 member companies of the Global Organization for EPA and DHA (GOED) and the Mateel Environmental Justice Foundation. The accord gives these companies operating certainty around Proposition 65 limits for dioxins, furans, PCBs and dioxin-like PCBs in products with EPA and DHA omega-3s. California had not previously set reproductive toxicity exposure limits for these compounds, or clarified how PCBs were to be measured for compliance with the State’s warning label law.

In addition, GOED previously reached an agreement with Chris Manthey and Benson Chiles, founders of www.fishoilsafety.com, which assures that these plaintiffs will not start any new lawsuits against GOED member companies whose products meet the agreement’s standards. This agreement also requires GOED to perform testing of product pulled from California retail shelves as well as to incorporate the settlement’s standards into the GOED Voluntary Monograph. The settlement’s PCB standards are similar to what already exists in the standards GOED requires of its members.

Organic News
Organic Farmer to Oversee California Pesticide Regulations

On February 2, California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. appointed former organic farmer Brian Leahy, 55, of Sacramento, as director of the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR).

Leahy has served as assistant director for the California Department of Conservation since 2006. He was a partner at EcoFacilitation in the Netherlands in 2006, served as executive director for the California Association of Resource Conservation Districts from 2004-06 and was executive director at the California Certified Organic Farmers from 2000-04. Owner and operator of Cherokee Ranch from 1980 to 2003, he was also a farm operator for Ackerlund Farm from 1992-93.

Leahy earned a Juris Doctorate degree from Creighton University School of Law. His appointment requires state senate confirmation. 

California’s previous pesticide regulator, Mary-Ann Warmerdam, resigned last March to work for Clorox. Her resignation came amid an uproar over the state’s approval in December 2010 of a controversial pesticide.

Nutrition Industry Executive News
NPA Revamps Dietary Supplement GMP Seminars

The Natural Products Association (NPA) has updated the popular Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) training program, “What You Need to Know: How the FDA GMP Rule for Dietary Supplements Applies to You.” In light of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) emphasis on GMP inspections, this course is vital for anyone whose job requires an understanding of the GMP rule for dietary supplements, according to the association. This includes senior management, regulatory affairs staff and QA/QC, production and laboratory personnel. The first opportunity to attend this seminar will be at Expo West on March 8-9 in Anaheim, CA.

The newly revised program now includes:
Issues identified in recent FDA inspections and warning letters.
Examples and case studies illustrating real-life GMP issues and scenarios.
An overview of industry business models and their respective GMP responsibilities.

The updated format brings more emphasis on the application of what is required for GMP compliance. In addition to Expo West, NPA’s 2012 seminars will be held in conjunction with the following trade shows:
NPA MarketPlace 2012, Las Vegas, NV, June 13-14
Expo East, Baltimore, MD, September 19-20
Located close to an industry supply show, Las Vegas, NV, November 5-6

For more information, visit www.NPAinfo.org/GMP.

IADSA Keeps the Focus on Additives at Codex

Additives used in food supplements will remain a key priority of the International Alliance of Dietary/Food Supplement Associations (IADSA) at Codex Alimentarius level in 2012 to ensure that manufacturers do not face unnecessary barriers to trade, according to the association.

Setting out its priority areas for the year, IADSA highlighted that on the additives front several still await discussion for their inclusion in the Codex General Standard for Food Additives (GSFA). These include sorbates (INS 200-203), sucroglycerides (INS 474), aspartame-acesulfame salt (INS 962) and sucrose oligoesters (INS 473a), all of which are widely used in the food supplement sector and will come up for discussion at the next meeting of the Codex Committee on Food Additives (CCFA) from March 12-16.

“It is our priority to ensure that adopted levels are both safe for consumers and consistent with those widely used by the global food supplement industry,” said David Pineda Ereño, IADSA’s regulatory affairs director. “Regarding these additives, we have provided scientific and technical research directly to the CCFA on their use and the maximum levels for their use, and are pleased to be able to provide information that contributes to Codex’s work. Not approving the inclusion of key additives in the General Standard for Food Additives list, or adopting very low levels, could create completely unnecessary technical problems for manufacturers.”

Last year, IADSA was instrumental in preventing the deletion of steviol glycosides from the Standard, putting forward scientific and technological justification for its use in food supplements to propose levels that were then agreed and adopted by the Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC). The additive is now officially part of the Codex General Standard for Food Additives, with a level and use applicable to chewable food supplements.

For more information, visit www.iadsa.org.


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