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International Centre for Research and Training on Seabuckthorn - Miscellaneous (Page 7)

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International Centre for Research and Training on Seabuckthorn - Miscellaneous
It should be noted that increasingly, products are entering the marketplace with a base of
seabuckthorn oils, enhancing other herbal phytochemical and cosmetic formulas, utilizing the
seabuckthorn name, but, formulated on cost, and not on efficacy.
Actual seabuckthorn processing procedures associated with improper harvesting, storage,
shipping and processing technology have shown huge losses in active constituents that largely
degrade the utilization of seabuckthorn to the consumer. These include such methods of processing
by diffusion, utilizing sunflower oil or hexane that create toxicity or high heat removing many of the
valuable constituents such as vitamins and proteins. There is also some evidence of significant
differences in analytical competence between laboratories due to differing protocols, etc.
Globally diverse examples of different definitions, areas of emphasis and regulatory environments,
point to the complexity of the field of botanical resource products. There is at present little common
ground, and each country is choosing its own position or direction. However, with global trade, and
international research, common monetary issues and global communication ever increasing, this is
highly undesirable. It would be of considerable benefit, for both domestic and export purposes, if
regulations were standardized and it also would be more cost-effective if criteria for the evaluation of
natural products were similar globally.
Regulations do seem to be going in a number of directions that may converge at some later date.
There is a growing willingness to evaluate natural products in a uniform manner, as the cost of
carrying out the complex studies to provide evidence in support of products, continues to increase.
Moreover, whatever definitions, categorizations and route of approval are used, the regulatory criteria
for proof of beneficial effect do not seem to differ greatly. Each country has emphasized the need for
detailed analysis and rigorous science in the evaluation of natural products. In sum total there are a
number of initiatives regarding functional foods that appear to be largely focused on the scientific
issues. At present, regulation of functional foods and supplements / nutraceuticals / cosmetics /
concentrates remains at the level of each member country. Regulations for concentrates and
formulations do vary, wherein many countries consider them as foods. However, claims relating to a
disease are generally not permitted, and if such claims are made, products then come under the
regulations for medical products or drugs requiring clinical trials and verification of efficacy within dose
criteria. Hence, labeling becomes extremely important.
Globally, seabuckthorn is at a crossroad, or a threshold in the awareness and acceptance by the
consumer. Our recent market study in the relation of seabuckthorn to other botanical resources
market positions, does not place seabuckthorn at the level, for example, of Ginkgo Biloba Ginseng or
Echinacea, but at the level of Kava Kava, Soy Isoflavones or Vitex/Chaste Berry.
As we know seabuckthorn contains a vast amount of phytochemical active compounds with
proven and related functions to support and heal the human body. In essence, the true value of
seabuckthorn has not been fully developed or utilized.
Comprehensive analyses of world publications indicate that most of the scientific research
accomplished to date may have been of interest to the scientific mind, but of no earthly use to the
consumer.
World wide, the market place is very competitive, battered by diverse policies of multinational
companies, banking and the economy and a diversified communications network. Only recently,
seabuckthorn was assigned a number by the FDA of the US for import and utilization. In Canada, it
will be January 2000 before the new regulations, and new government department be in operation for
full accreditation of nutraceuticals, a designation for which seabuckthorn qualifies.
In numerous discussions, conference reports and consumer surveys the highlight has always
been pertinent to good manufacturing practices (GMP). This is the subject of reproducibility of
botanical preparations. Numerous studies have reported that many herbal preparations, which are
available on the market, do not have a reproducible, consistent composition. One of the major

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