The long saga of the banning of many traditional herbs by Brussels (see this post, and this post and acres of material on line) has always smelt bad. The pharmaceutical industry have had it all so much their own way that there just had to have been some sort of collusion. Well, at last, supporters of traditional herbal medicine are not the only ones to think so.
According to a report on the Alliance for Natural Health site, 637 our of 641 MEPs voted not to sign off the European Medicines Agency (the agency responsible for banning the traditional herbs) accounts, citing ‘grave concerns’ over the agency’s independence, its hiring practices and its sources of funding.
Meanwhile the the Nordic Cochrane Centre, part of the internationally respected Cochrane Collaboration has accused the EMA of withholding clinical trials evidence in order not to jeopardise the profits of drug companies.
No doubt the EMA will fight back – but it is very encouraging that MEPs, in their report, have recognised that ‘the EMA is acting to promote the interests of the very pharmaceutical interests it is meant to be regulating on behalf of EU citizens – misusing citizens’ money in the process!’
Watch that space – there may yet be hope for those herbs!