GNC: We Card
By George Anderson
General Nutrition Centers (GNC) announced yesterday that it will begin requiring consumers to show ID when purchasing products containing ephedra and other health products designed for adult use. Those under 18 will not be able to purchase products with ephedra as well as supplements with androstenedione, kava, melatonin and synephrine, says a report in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
GNC will continue to carry these products but will restrict sale to adults. The chain’s action comes about during a period of intense scrutiny over the safety and effectiveness of products use in weight-loss and other health needs.
Mike Meyers, president and chief executive officer, GNC said, “We found consumers were starving for information and with all the mixed media out there, they do not know whom to trust for that information. We are making a full-fledged effort to educate consumers that GNC is a trusted authority they can count on, and we believe that we will earn a great deal of respect when customers see us checking IDs.”
Moderator’s Comment: What is your reaction to GNC’s
Proponents claim that there are more deaths every year
from aspirin use than from ephedra. When used as directed, products containing
ephedra are safe and effective (in the short term) for weight loss. GNC’s action
is a responsible move that others should follow. It might be the only thing
that keeps these products on the shelf.