– The sickness indu$try’s last stand...
[Guest Article] By Australian Health Activist Eve
Release April 1, 2005 Sydney ~ Revised April 23, 2005 -
Published here May 31st, 2005
What is CODEX? (34) In short it is an
annual World Health Organisation (WHO) sponsored gathering of delegates in
Europe, many of them trans-national pharmaceutical corporations who are
primarily focused on increasing their market share, by pushing their desired
and arbitrary regulatory “standards” into a global standard and
forcing it onto the smaller local supplement industry, all in the name of “international
regulatory excellence”. The Codex Committee is also bound by the World
Trade Organisation (WTO) treaties.
The WTO is a global
commercial police that ensures countries are required to purchase from
trans-national corporations in favour of their own locally produced goods, in
the name of “lowering trade barriers”. This WHO/WTO joint
effort called CODEX is in the process of wiping out local supplement companies
and natural health care practices, to bring in more drug based medicine, in
what is euphemistically known as “creating a level playing field”,
while primarily giving the public a misleading impression that someone in the
World Health Organisation (WTO) is looking after its health and safety.
CODEX recommendations are
then adopted by regulators such as the Australian TGA or the US FDA by various
direct or indirect means that end up as Acts and amendments that are passed
into law by Parliaments or Congress, usually without public debate.
In 2002 I unveiled Codex to a
Brisbane, Australia audience of 300 people. Only 3 knew anything about it -
the same three I’d spoken with before the lecture. I then wrote a chapter on
CODEX in my book “Health Betrayal”. Primary data about CODEX
is not easy to find. (34) And there remains deliberate misinformation
emanating from government sources with close ties to trans-national
corporations. Meanwhile, the Australian regulator, the TGA (Therapeutic Goods
Administration) is deeply involved in the corporate agenda as this article
The Australian Health
Minister, Mr. Abbott, has recently called a Sydney talkback radio program to “reassure”
the presenter and listening audience that CODEX is not an issue in Australia.
At the same time there has been no effort on the part of the government to
publicly reveal the extraordinary events that have delivered Australia into
corporate governance in health care. This includes the very real
possibility that many cheap and effective natural remedies may no longer be
available to the public after July 1 when drastic changes that have never been
openly debated, are set to be implemented by Parliament.
It is my intention to
reveal the fact that trans-national pharmaceutical corporations have already
assumed the role of government at least where health care is concerned.
I intend to highlight what steps have already been taken by corporate
interests to move Australia and New Zealand toward CODEX and toward
international corporate governance in the Asia Pacific region. This
being true, it would alter the basic premise and agreement which Australian
governance was founded upon – Democracy. This agreement cannot be
altered except with the informed consent of the majority and only after public
debate and referendum. It is my educated guess that most Australians
want democracy for themselves and that they would want to preserve it for
future generations. It is my guess that Australians do not want to be governed
by trans-national corporations. It is my intention to allow these issues
to be debated, understood and corrected by the electors, the only legitimate
proprietors of government at this time.
History – Key Data
When debating regulatory
matters I believe it is essential to bear in mind that the supplement industry
and the drug industry are totally different industries. The natural
supplement industry and its related discipline, natural health care is
thousands of years old with a proven tradition. For example, Nostradamus used
compressed rose petal pastilles, rich in vitamin C to treat his patients
suffering from bubonic plague. Many of his patients survived the dreaded
disease, and Nostradamus himself, who took the pastilles never succumbed to
The modern supplement
industry has been traditionally locally owned by private or family
companies and evolved around its own proven quality and safety standards.
Traditionally using cheap and naturally sourced raw ingredients, the
supplement industry has an enviable product safety record. In
addition an entire branch of natural and nutritional medicine has developed
over the centuries with a long tradition of safety and a large body of
scientific evidence in support of its efficacy. A little known fact is that
literally thousands of peer-reviewed studies exist to support the success of
natural and nutritional approaches to medicine. (36,37,38,39,40) There exist
many conditions that can only be significantly remedied by nutritional
The pharmaceutical industry
as we know it, on the other hand, only started in earnest about 60 years ago.
Many drugs have been so recently synthesised that their side effects will not
be known for some years to come. Pharmaceutical corporations rely on
patented artificial chemical drugs to generate most of their profits. Aggressive
drug company marketing and image management has created the impression that
drugs are essential to health, when in fact deaths from adverse drug reactions
make up the fourth highest cause of death in the US. Still stinging from
the market share lost through consumers opting for natural supplements, the
trans-national pharmaceutical corporations have influenced the regulators to
regulate supplements as drugs when in fact vitamins and minerals are not drugs
but essential to all humans on a daily basis.
The difference between drugs
and nutrients is that they are fundamentally opposites. There are many
conditions caused when sufficient nutrients are not supplied to the body each
day, but there is no such thing as a drug deficiency.
I’m a health writer. I track the sickness
industry. I watch while powerful vested interests infiltrate governments
of sovereign nations. Lately I’d been busy with some other issues and nearly
missed a hat trick that was being performed by Australian politicians that
would remove freedom of choice from the community. I discovered it just
in time when an article came across my desk entitled “The Codex threat to
Australia – fact or fiction?” written by a chap who sourced his
information from a few government websites. He opined that the Codex
issue was merely hype and nonsense and nothing much for Aussies or anybody
else in the world to worry about. His article was published by the Australian
Traditional Medicine Society, an organisation that is supposed to represent
complementary health practitioners and provide them with clear information
about exactly WHO’s in charge of making decisions about supplements.
Frankly, I expected such a hose-down article as this to more likely appear in
a pharmaceutical company trade magazine or as a press release from the TGA.
But I assumed the drug giants have their own spin doctors, legions of
them. And they are quite content to have useful gophers disseminate their
whitewash to the rest of us. Later I discovered the article’s author
regularly sat on a TGA committee called the Interim Advertising Council, which
has, along with several pharmaceutical front organisations such as the
Medicines Australia and the Self-Medication Industry, set up an official
advertising agency that so blatantly serves drug company corporate interests
that even the AMA objects to it on the grounds that “the process is
occurring against a backdrop of enormous pressure…from pharmaceutical
companies and others to open up to direct consumer advertising”. (24,
I must however give thanks to the article in
question, and to its author, Raymond Khoury, for it led me to cast my
attention back to Codex and focus on a currently unfolding disaster in the
Pacific region that is only avoidable if the Electors get a grip on the reins
If you believe, as I do, that in time the
stench of sleaze, bribery, greed and dishonesty will reach the nose of the
ethical majority to be dealt with accordingly, then you might agree that the
sickness industry is about to collapse in on itself by the sheer weight of its
own corruption. This is a time when the drug industry and our
“regulators” are committing some stupid and desperate acts against human
rights. And our politicians don’t look good passing Parliamentary
bills, acts and amendments in the dead of night that arose through improper
influences. Remember their names, for it is they who are accountable for
their ethics. And it is we who are accountable for the kind of society
we have allowed corporations to create in our name.
Health Care into Perspective – Understanding CODEX
It’s official. US research
shows that inappropriate and dangerous medical treatments and adverse drug
reactions are now the number one cause of death (4). To some it was no
surprise. It seemed an inevitable outcome from the 1980’s when health
care was taken over by “health care” corporations and the pharmaceutical
industry. Then the bottom line in health care became profit instead of sending
the patient home well and drug free, if possible. (13)
There are still no
Parliamentary enquiries into the deaths of 18,000 Australians each year,
killed by inappropriate doctoring and prescribed pharmaceutical drugs that are
licensed by the TGA (the Australian regulator). The cause of these avoidable
deaths has been known by the government for over ten years when Dr. Runciman
made it known in a report he prepared to the government in 1995. And yet
nothing has been done about it. This makes these unnecessary deaths a
deliberate act on the part of the perpetrators, the medical and pharmaceutical
corporations and the Australian government. This act is the equivalent of
deliberately exterminating all living beings from an entire large sized
Australian country town each year. (1,2,3). This killing for
profit has knowingly continued for the past 10 years.
In addition to the death
toll, 50,000 Australians are maimed and disabled, not by their diseases, but
by the “health care system” which includes; bad doctoring and serious or
permanent damage from drugs that were licensed by the TGA. Yet there are no
outraged politicians giving undertakings on the Senate steps to find the
culprits, to stop the criminality of it. This appears astonishing, since 187
Australians are unnecessarily killed and maimed each day – that’s seven
Australians killed or maimed per hour by conventional health care - more
Australians than were ever killed in all the wars. By the time you have
read this another Australian will die or be disabled by inappropriate medical
treatment or an adverse reaction from a drug that was licensed and approved by
the TGA. No memorials are erected to these victims. (1,2,3)
is Mainstream Media?
A few years ago the media
conducted a feeding frenzy about an unfortunate person who died allegedly of
an allergic reaction to royal jelly, a highly nutritious food that worker bees
feed to the hive queen bee. (Unfortunately many more fatal allergic reactions
occur annually than ever before, to both synthetic and to natural substances,
due to the fact that general immunological health is declining through
environmental degradation.) The person had ingested both the jelly
and a meat sausage before the allergic reaction occurred, one that could
equally have been caused by the preservative in the sausage. However,
the TGA launched a lengthy investigation into the royal jelly, and required
Royal Jelly to carry a health warning on the label. The sausage, of course was
not investigated, nor allocated a health hazard label, one that the fatty,
preserved product could arguably deserve, since the nitrite preservatives in
sausages are responsible for many serious or fatal allergic reactions.
To salvage any remaining
integrity the media would need to start presenting honest reports about the
serious damage done to victims of the pharmaceutical and conventional health
care corporations. Instead it runs the occasional unfounded vitamin
scare about the purported dangers of vitamin C or Echinacea.
is the TGA?
The TGA (therapeutic goods
administration) is the Australian “regulator” of drugs, chemicals,
genetically modified products, medical devices and now nutritional supplements
and herbs which it calls “complementary medicines”. The TGA is a
statutory body, created by an act of Parliament over 20 years ago on behalf of
the Australian community. Its motto is “to ensure the safety of all
Since its inception as
“watchdog”, the TGA has licensed and allowed genetically modified foods
into the country which opinion polls showed the overwhelming majority of
Australians did not want.
Despite hundreds of letters
from concerned citizens and chemically injured persons, the TGA has continued
to allow chemicals onto the market which are shown to have toxic effects on
humans even when used as directed.
In addition, the TGA has
licensed pharmaceutical drugs such as Zyban, Vioxx and mercury laden vaccines
among others, despite available data about the potentially serious and fatal
effects these drugs have on humans. The TGA still allows the drugs that cause
a large proportion of the 18,000 deaths and 50,000 serious injuries through
adverse drug reactions while on the other hand it has compiled a large data
base on its regulation of natural substances including vitamins, minerals, and
even honey and olive oil, listing them as medicines.
The TGA has taken over the
regulation of nutrients which have traditionally been produced by a
separate and unique industry and are not part of the pharmaceutical industry
because nutrients are not drugs, they are essential to all humans. Most health
conscious persons now take supplements because it is known that food produced
by modern agriculture is depleted in essential nutrients. TGA now
regulates nutrients as drugs requiring evidence and clinical trials. There is
no point to conducting “clinical trials” to determine whether persons need
calcium or any other essential nutrient since it has been a long established
fact that humans need all essential nutrients daily. The sole advantage
in regarding nutrients as drugs is that the drug industry then stands to have
exclusive control of all supplement manufacturing, sales and distribution.
The TGA maintains close ties
to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and to the Codex Commission.
Domestically, it convenes various committees upon which sit well known
representatives of pharmaceutical interests and pharmaceutical front
organisations. (19,20,21) TGA regularly consults with and places on its
committees representatives of pharmaceutical and food companies such as
Proctor and Gamble, Unilever, Johnson & Johnson, Roche, Eli Lily, Glaxo,
Pfizer, Wyeth and many other multination drug corporations. Without
Australians’ knowledge or consent, the TGA routinely places corporations in
positions of power when making decisions about Australian’s health.
(23) It could be argued that any decision arising from this
improper relationship could well be a legal nullity.
Globally there was one
privately owned large supplier of ingredients for the manufacture of
nutritional supplements that was big enough to be in direct competition with
trans-national pharmaceutical corporations. The supply chain of nutritionals
and drugs has been fiercely coveted by the multi-national pharmaceutical
corporations such as Roche, Merck and Wyeth, to name just a few. But
Sydney based Pan Pharmaceuticals was a privately owned company, and a
relatively big player that supplied most of Australia and a portion of the
world market with ingredients for the formulation of nutritional supplements
and a large variety of natural supplement products.
In April 2003 the TGA raided
Pan Pharmaceuticals, giving the grounds that the company’s travel sickness
product had included a faulty batch. The company had already voluntarily
recalled it and was addressing the problem as was customary in the industry.
However, TGA handled Pan far differently from the way it had dealt with any
multi-national drug company. The regulator immediately
forced Pan to shut down and within a few days recalled over 1600 natural
supplement products with which nothing was found amiss on the routine testing
that had occurred just previously. (5) The regulator created chaos among
consumers and retailers alike as the TGA recall escalated into the largest
recall of natural products in history, all the more extraordinary since there
had been no complaints about the company’s supplements prior to the recall.
Moreover, the vitamin and
mineral supplements, which had caused no known ill effects, were classed by
the TGA as necessitating a class 1 recall, meaning the regulator claimed the
natural products would “cause death or permanent injury”. The TGA
however, provided no evidence that any vitamin or mineral, and in particular
Pan’s had ever caused death or disability. This TGA mischief created
wide spread anxiety about nutritional supplements in the public mind. A
feat that would have cost the Pharmaceutical industry public relations machine
millions of dollars, was thus done overnight by the TGA “regulator”.
The ruse terrified scores of little old ladies who thought their calcium
tablet would kill them and demanded a refund from their health food store, but
it failed to impress those who already knew about the war on alternative and
complementary health. And it particularly aroused suspicion in those
who relied on logical data to come to their conclusions.
What this deception did,
however, was to reveal the TGA double standard in favour of drugs from drug
giants and against natural products that were produced by Australian companies
who were big enough to cut into multinational drug company market shares.
Meanwhile, any evidence contained in the recalled vitamins and minerals,
disappeared without a bubble when the regulator destroyed a vast mountain of
natural supplements at a secret location.
TGA bias was particularly
evident by the manner in which the regulator conducted future recalls.
Interestingly, the regulator conducted a class 2 recall on VIOXX;
a drug manufactured by drug giant Merck - a drug which did cause 55,000
confirmed deaths and over 180,000 confirmed injuries to Americans alone. A
Class 2 recall meant the TGA believed the “defects could cause illness…but
are not class one” That meant that the regulator claimed the drug
could not kill or disable anyone, which was an obvious and self evident
falsehood that put the community at risk. (6).
If Pan was shut down
after nobody complained about its supplement line or suffered a single
problem, then it would be reasonable for trans-national Merk to be shut down
for selling a drug that killed tens of thousands of Americans alone. This has
not been the case and the TGA has not even conducted an investigation into how
many Australians or New Zealanders might have been killed by the Drug Vioxx to
which it issued a licence.
Within days of the raid the
hapless Pan company and its founder were embroiled in official red tape and
TGA forced Pan to close its doors permanently. Shortly after the TGA
raid, someone called in KPMG, the liquidator, so fast, that the owner, Jim
Selim was removed from his own company with the velocity of a speeding bullet
and the manufacturing plant and company was sold lock stock and barrel, in
only six months for a pittance, (a likely world record for a liquidator).
The Pan company that Mr. Selim had built up over 20 years, worth over
500 million dollars was sold for only 20 million within a few months of the
TGA raid. (10) Interestingly, KPMG is a multinational power broker based
in Switzerland that deals in accounting, mergers, liquidation and
interestingly, also in chemicals and pharmaceuticals. KPMG’s specialty
however, is offering financial advice and other consultant “services” to
the pharmaceutical industry. ( 8 ).
Over the ensuing 2 years the
TGA has kept Mr. Selim busy in a gruelling round of court battles while the
liquidator, KPMG continued to pick the carcass clean. Recently, KPMG filed a
statement of claim against Mr. Selim for the amount of 300 million over the
collapse of Pan brought about by the TGA. (10)
Since the Pan debacle, the
beleaguered but apparently spirited former owner of Pan intended to start
another business in Viet Nam as a manufacturer of health products there but
TGA and now ASIC (the Australian company watchdog) is attempting to stop his
manufacturing licence in Viet Nam, alleging irregularities in the paperwork.
Interestingly, most of the big pharmaceutical companies such as Novartis,
Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline have now set up offices in Vietnam. (9, 10).
on Post Pan Rampage
After the TGA disposed of
Pan, it systematically ran through other small Australian vitamin and
supplement manufacturers like a dose of Epsom salts in a frenzy of “inspections”
and “regulatory activities”.
supplement manufacturers allege TGA used a variety of intimidatory methods
against them including the halting of manufacturing operations and near
impossible requirements that mainly cost over $500,000 to implement. NZ Health
Trust reports “recent reports out of Australia…include comments such as
compliance costs having increased by 800% for one firm, another has had to
spend an extra $2 million in compliance costs, another still faces a $1.86
million bill to upgrade their computer systems as now required.”
TGA officials allegedly
demanded proprietors sign confidentiality agreements and other agreements
demanding that the proprietor will not hold TGA liable for the loss of their
business after such “regulating activities”. (11) Australian
supplement companies remain silent after TGA’s “inspections”.
Many are bound by agreements and none wanted their names revealed for fear of
a fresh round of “TGA regulatory activities”.
Although a few are now considering legal action regardless, an enquiry
into TGA corruption should get these witnesses testifying with considerable
help from a subpoena.
The TGA had routinely
inspected the Australian supplement industry in the 2 years before it sent Pan
to the wall, and did not suspend a single manufacturer’s license. But after
Pan, dozens of manufacturers were driven out of business and over 12
Australian supplement companies “voluntarily” turned in their
manufacturing licenses and went to the wall after TGA scoured through their
business again. (All the manufacturers had already passed previous years’
rigorous TGA inspections.) (18, 11) Those who could afford it just
paid the money and did what was required of them to stay in business for the
time being. Other manufacturers sold out for fire sale prices. Following
this obvious witch hunt, many natural product lines remain out of stock in
Australia and many nutritional supplements have been permanently discontinued
as have the smaller Australian companies who made them.
and Drug Corporations Set up Committee
In May 2003, only a month
after TGA gutted Pan, the regulator issued a public statement alleging that
“concerns” had been raised about the quality of complementary medicines
(supplements) and indeed even the competency of complementary practitioners
(naturopaths). All this after: (1) the defective travel sickness pill was
a drug and not a supplement and had been removed. (2) the company had
been closed, and dismantled, (3) none of the 1600 Pan dietary supplements were
found to have caused any problems, and (4) no naturopath or alternative
practitioner had killed or harmed anyone with supplements (In the time it
takes to read this far another 4 Australians have been killed or seriously
injured by dangerous medical procedures or pharmaceutical drugs licensed by
Ignoring all the evidence to
the contrary, the TGA stated on its website; “In May 2003, to reassure
the public and maintain confidence in Australia's reputation as a supplier of
high quality and safe medicines, the Australian Government established the
Expert Committee on Complementary Medicines in the Health System (the
The TGA “expert”
committee designated to investigate supplements on behalf of the Australian
public, includes pharmaceutically orientated individuals and several
pharmaceutical front organsiations such as the Self Medication Industry (ASMI)
which represents Bayer, Pfizer, Merck, Glaxo, Schering and Wyeth among other
trans-national pharmaceutical corporations. (12) Brazenly, the expert
committee also includes the Vice President of manufacturing operations in the
Asia Pacific Region of Wyeth, a multinational that markets drugs, vaccines and
also nutrient supplements including raw ingredients to supplements. (12)
Incredibly, Wyeth, was in direct competition to the products and raw
ingredients that Pan supplied in the Asia Pacific region, just before TGA
raided Pan. Wyeth has a huge Asia Pacific base of operation and is
aggressively expanding its corporate territory. (16) Interestingly,
Wyeth’s profits plunged a few months before the TGA shut down Pan and the
drug giant was only saved a substantial loss that quarter by its small but
profitable range of vitamin products. (17,14, 15).
committee, stacked with corporate representatives has been working on creating
more TGA legislation governing the control and regulations of supplements. In
a stunning display of corporate governance over Australians, it has recently
released fifty more expert recommendations that have resulted in 107 pages of
proposed amendments to the TGA Act which would increase the powers of the TGA
to “regulate” even more stringently. This would give TGA
police powers and the power to impose criminal charges and penalties on
Australian supplement manufacturers. All this when there has never been
a problem with supplements.
Since late 2004, the TGA
Amendment Bill of 2005 has been floated around the Australian Parliament.
This Bill proposes stiff criminal charges including a half a million
dollar fine against anyone who does not report even a purported mild adverse
reaction to a natural remedy or a supplement. Since deaths from supplements
are virtually unheard of, it is not difficult to imagine the official abuses,
and persecutions against natural practitioners and products inherent in such
legislation, when the pharmaceutical industry death tolls remain unchecked.
The only beneficiaries of the proposed Bill appear to be the Pharmaceutical
corporations, probably a broad indication of the identity of its originators.
This Bill is intended to bring about the death of the Australian
owned supplement industry and the takeover of the industry by Pharmaceutical
corporations. It is intended to make it a criminal offence for anyone to order
any supplements from overseas. This Bill will further connect Australia
to the international regulatory structures such as CODEX.
The TGA Amendment Bill of
2005 has been thus far difficult to source because it has been the apparent
intention of government to obscure this document from public view as it is
noted in prominent type on front page the draft copy; “DRAFT-IN-CONFIDENCE
This draft is supplied in confidence and should be given appropriate
protection." Protected from whom? The Australian voters?
There has been no public debate about giving police powers to the TGA and its
pharmaceutical corporation allies.
Fortunately all interested
Australians can and should now access this proposed bill on the website listed
below at reference nos. 41, 42.
Considering the improper
methods used to originate and pass TGA legislation the Australian Public
should contact their Members of Parliament and demand they say NO to passing
the Therapeutic Goods Amendment Bill of 2005.
knowledge or consent the TGA gave multinational drug companies the power to
expand into and monopolise Australian markets and shake out the Australian
competition. This was done under the guise of protecting the Australian
public health when there is nothing more than a trade war going on.
in wars of any kind, people die in trade wars too, and another Australian has
died as you read this because the TGA and its drug corporation allies are busy
suppressing and outlawing supplements. This enables drug companies to destroy
and take over the supplement market while continuing to profit from many
particularly dangerous drugs that are known to kill and disable humans.
Remarkably, despite the
shakeout, many small fry companies did survive and while the pesky little
Aussie battlers were still taking a breath, the TGA and its allies swung into
action on an urgent agenda. The years 2003 to 2004 were distinguished by
unprecedented changes to the structure of the regulator and the rising
dominance of the pharmaceutically based health care industry. It was the
beginning of both merging offshore into a massively powerful corporate
structure – one that would whistle to the tune of CODEX. For that to occur, the
trans-national pharmaceutical companies needed the following:
1. The world
trade organization (WTO) for gaining entry into domestic markets and levelling
2. World health organization (WHO) Codex committee that
sets “standards” for all supplements to be classed as drugs, which
eventually will only be allowed to be made synthetically by drug companies in
line with “international standards” and not by local manufacturers
using inexpensive natural raw ingredients.
3. A corporately
out of the Elector’s reach who would “regulate” wholly in the
interests of the drug companies.
4. An international treaty (Joint
trans-Tasman treaty) that would set the foundation for the new
international regulator over Australia and New Zealand (the Trans Tasman joint
Agency) that would be run as a corporation in partnership with trans-nationals
and the TGA and be in the international jurisdiction of CODEX.
An advertising agency that would serve the new Trans-Tasman Joint Agency with
an advertising code that would “legalize” advertising
multinational’s pharmaceutical drugs directly to consumers, while at the
same time preventing supplements from being advertised.
Part three will explore how
this agenda was carried out.
Treaty Not Many Knew About
In the months after the Pan
debacle, persons unknown to the Australian electorate drafted an international
treaty between Australia and New Zealand called “Agreement Between
the Government of Australia and the Government of New Zealand for the
Establishment of a Joint Scheme for the Regulation of Therapeutic products”,
(known as the JTA treaty for short).
This treaty was signed on
December 10, 2003 by the health Ministers of both countries without any public
debate and without the consent or consultation with Australian or New Zealand
Electors. The JTA treaty is intended to form the “legal”
foundation for a massive new regulatory agency.
The JTA treaty is intended
to come into full effect on July 1, 2005 if Australians do not stop this
enactment process by telling their Parliamentary representatives and the
Australian Health Minister that they are not to pass any enactment legislation
pertaining to this treaty. It appears highly questionable that any legislation
that is passed by stealth has a legitimate force of law in a democracy, and
that legislation passed in this manner is a legal nullity and subject to
“Agency” Not Many Knew About
The JTA treaty is intended to
be the purported “legal” foundation upon which a monstrously
powerful “world class” regulatory “agency” has been
created. Known as the “Agency” or “the Trans-Tasman
Joint agency” it would do away with the TGA as a statutory entity, which
was at least theoretically accountable to Australian Electors and it would
absorb Medsafe, the New Zealand regulator, within its tangled corporate
structure. With those two entities nullified the newly born mammoth “Agency”,
scheduled to come into effect on July 1, 2005 is in fact structurally an
off shore corporate business set to be run by a chairman of the board, a
managing director, two persons with “regulating experience” and a
person with “broad experience in commercial matters”.
This Agency creates a corporate partnership between the regulator and
the trans-national corporations, which removes it a further step from the
Australian and New Zealand elector and into the direct jurisdiction of the
World Health Authority global regulator CODEX. (18)
drastic changes have been conducted in such a secret manner that even Dr.
Robyn Napier the AMA representative said of it; “the process has largely
occurred without the knowledge of the public.”
means to force the Australian “regulatory standards” onto New
Zealand’s supplement industry which up until recently enjoyed relative
prosperity and freedom. “Harmonization”, creates the same WTO
global standards in each country that are vital to the interests of
trans-national pharmaceutical corporations.
For several years now it
seemed as though Australia had been the designated vitamin police in the South
Pacific region. However, immediately after Pan was disposed of, extra
plane loads of gray be-suited men from the TGA were flown across the Tasman at
taxpayer’s expense to do to the Kiwi (43) industry what TGA was doing
to the Australian supplement industry – making way for the big drug
corporations. Like a squad of mafia hit men, the TGA visited upon
New Zealand’s supplement industry its new “international standards in
regulatory excellence” and sent their vitamin businesses to the wall as
they “regulated” their way through Kiwi companies. New
Zealanders did not appreciate Australian HARMonizing efforts, as their many
websites and activists indicate. Australians, however, were not alerted
by the mainstream media. They remained largely unaware of the issue
while the TGA cooked up yet another scheme, the trans-Tasman advertising
Trans-Tasman Advertising Scheme Not Many Knew About
In mid 2003 the Pan carcass
was barely cold but the TGA remained a hotbed of activity. With so much big
business coming together under the JTA treaty and its “Trans-Tasman joint
Agency”, TGA embarked on a new round of committees that ensured the
panopoly of corporations would have a collective voice in the media to
advertise their goods. New “standards” had to be urgently
drafted up by the TGA and its pharmaceutical corporation partners that would
come to be known as the “Therapeutic Products Advertising Code”.
To many Australian electors
it might still seem unusual for its official regulator to collaborate with
media moguls and drug executives and create an advertising agency, but that is
what happened in mid 2003, when one of the first of a series of many
consultation meetings took place with the “stakeholders”. The
trans-Tasman advertising scheme had among its attending delegates representatives
from Unilever, Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, ReckitBenckiser, Procter
and Gamble, and Roche. (19, 20). Later in the year a similar meeting was
convened at the Sydney Masonic hall and attended by many delegates including
from Eli Lilly, News Ltd, Boots, various advertising agencies, Faulding, Astra
Zeneca, Baxter, Glaxo, Boehringer Inngelheim, Fairfax, Merk, Novartis,
Schering Plough, Pfizer, Roche and of course who else but
Wyeth. [Further explanatory note in reference number (21) ]
Dr. Robyn Napier of the AMA,
normally an ultra conservative organization, stated in her submission to a
Parliamentary committee on April 30, 2004; “the process is
occurring against a backdrop of enormous pressure on a number of fronts,
including: (pressure) from pharmaceutical companies...to open up direct
consumer advertising. To down schedule medicines to categories where
direct consumer advertising is possible.” (24) (The AMA was
unhappy about this but did not cite patient safety concerns such as the new
advertising code allowing a confused grandparent or a vulnerable teenager to
purchase prescription drugs directly from the chemist.)
It seemed the trans-national
pharmaceutical corporations were finally able to write their own advertising “code
of ethics” allowing them to advertise their prescription drugs over the
media. This necessitated that prescription drugs would be down regulated to
become over the counter drugs. At the same time the code was also
drafted in such a way as to tighten up regulations on supplement advertising
making it virtually impossible to even mention a positive health effect from a
vitamin in public.
According to an inside
industry source, the media advertising of the therapeutic products advertising
code is managed by pharmaceutical front organizations such as ASMI, the
Australian chapter of the Self Medication Industry which directly
represents the interests of over a dozen trans-national pharmaceutical
companies such as Pfizer, Merck, Roche, Glaxo and Wyeth ( as well as a
number of smaller companies).
Some time ago I noticed that
a world wide dietary supplement trade organization called the Council for
Responsible Nutrition (CRN) seemed to pop up regularly on Codex committees in
Europe and it also wafted around the Aussie TGA. The CRN has chapters in
most developed countries and takes a lead role in advising governments on
issues such as nutritional supplements. It represents over 100 companies
in the “dietary supplement industry”.
On January 1, 1999 the CRN
and another trade organization merged to form the Complementary Health Council
of Australia CHC a “peak body” that claims to “represent the
complementary health care industry in Australia”. Its executive
director was Val Johansen at the time who had headed the TGA surveillance unit
(28). Now a consultant to industry, she retired from CHC as from
mid 2004. Ms Johansen has been ever present in most TGA complementary
medicine’s committees and is a member of the Interim Advertising committee
which has determined the Trans-Tasman advertising schemes’ advertising “code”.
In an article published in the ACNEM Journal in 1999, she claims that the new
reforms the regulator has brought in means “growth in the supplement
industry and consumers having access to a wider range of safe complementary
health products, as well as balanced and factual information.”
The CNR’s membership
includes multinational corporations such as: Eastman chemical company, BASF,
Bayer corporation, Monsanto and the ever present Wyeth pharmaceutical company
whose interests are represented by the organisation. (26.27) It is
not known whether these corporations are currently members of the CHC.
CODEX They Tell You Isn’t Real
The public constantly sends
me information asking me to comment on it. Recently a flurry of official
information updates have landed on my desk from the Complementary Healthcare
Council (CHC). The updates have been so widely disseminated to
groups and individuals that I thought there must be someone on round the clock
duty. Interestingly I have seen almost identical information originating
from trade and front organizations in other countries.
In essence, the official CHC “tech
update” alleges: CODEX is only about food and not about supplements.
The public is being ill informed about CODEX and confused by persons on the
internet with “alarmist views” who “do not fully understand how Codex
works”. It says the only Codex representative Australia has/is from
the fisheries department and he doesn’t make decisions about supplements,
(only fish). And no one in Australia is sitting on any Codex committee
doing anything to do with vitamins and supplements. Only about food.
Nothing about supplements… (29 ) In an extra warning
in bold letters the CHC urges all members to be cautious of CODEX information
from the internet and other forums, claiming it may be “inaccurate” ,
“alarmist” and “ill informed”.
I read the two page “article”
and immediately suffered a bad case of deja`vue. It sounded so much like
Raymond Khoury’s article I could have sworn it was written by one and the
same person and merely recycled - possibly not surprising since both Ms.
Johanson and Mr. Khoury sit on the same TGA committees.
Deep in CODEX
For many years now a few
lucky Australians have been sent on a yearly trip to participate in the WHO
CODEX committee in Europe. They are sent by their government, which
officially denies Codex exists in the context of supplements. In
November 2003 an Australian delegation landed in Bonn, Germany. The
three day CODEX meeting was to be hosted by the Federal Republic of Germany.
Inside the stark German
Government building the 25th session was being convened of the “CODEX
COMMITTEE ON NUTRITION AND FOODS FOR SPECIAL DIETARY USES” by the
authoritarian President and Chairman Herr Rolf Grossklaus. (There was no
one from the Aussie fisheries department present in the Australian
delegation.) The session was well attended by 225 delegates and
advisors representing 48 member countries, including Australia and
representatives from 29 organisations and trans-national corporations.
Herr Toepner from the German
Federal Ministry opened the meeting with a short speech reminding the
delegates of the purpose of the Codex committee; “to protect the health of
consumers, to ensure ‘fair trade practices’ and the committee’s
important responsibilities under the WTO”. (WTO is the global trade
police ensuring trade barriers fall and local competition is leveled so that
global corporations can take over national markets, in the name of “world
class regulatory standards” and “fair trade practices”.)
Herr Toepner apparently
stressed the same message given to the delegates at TGA/FSANZ head quarters,
for they made an heroic effort to further the agenda of supplement
restriction at the CODEX meeting. The CODEX committee Chairman was well
pleased with their work. The funereal looking Herr Grossklaus gratefully
accepted the Australian proposal to apply a “risk” analysis to
nutritional supplements. The committee once again expressed its appreciation
to the; “Delegation of Australia for its work in this important area and
agreed that a ‘risk-based approach’ should be followed for the
establishment of upper limits for nutrients,” as stated the 2003 CODEX
minutes report. That meant the Committee was currently working on
placing a restriction on world wide supplement consumers. The
Australian delegation agreed with the Chairman that the next 2004 Codex
“session should be kept informed of the progress achieved by WHO in order to
facilitate its further work on vitamins and minerals.” (Author’s
translation of meaning of this is in footnote 33)
Moreover, the CODEX observer
from the Council for Responsible Nutrition agreed wholeheartedly - Probably
much to the approval of its members Bayer, BASF, Monsanto and of course, Wyeth.
(The Australian chapter of the CRN merged with Ms Johansen’s CHC in
Among the CODEX participants
that year, there were at least eleven multinational food and pharmaceutical
companies including of course, Nestle and Roche. However, three
delegations alone were from Wyeth.
The 2003 CODEX must have been considered such a
success that the Australian delegate, Ms. Janine Lewis, Principal
nutritionist, returned with another delegate the following year, Ms. Jane
Allen, Senior nutritionist. Both are employees of the Food standards Australia
and New Zealand FSANZ, a TGA related department which has joint committees
with the TGA. The two departments share personnel, resources and curiously
similar agendas. Interestingly, Val Johanson, formerly of CHC states in
her bio that she; “held positions in the Australian Public Service as
head of food standards at Federal level and she also established the
Therapeutic Goods Administration’s surveillance unit, which she headed for
almost four years. Positions currently held include; member of the
Complementary Medicines Evaluation Committee, Chair of the Therapeutic Goods
Advertising Code Council, Head of the International Herbal Regulatory Task
Force of the International Alliance of Dietary Supplement Associations”.
There is much confusion deliberately generated
by the regulator and its corporate partners to obscure the real agendas. Is
Australia’s participation in CODEX about food or supplements? (therapeutic
goods). The answer is both. This is what a law link had to say about the
legal interface between foods and supplements after the changes to the
Therapeutic Goods Act that was rammed through after Pan. “Food can now
be a therapeutic good. The TGA is now able to designate food items as
therapeutic goods. Previously, prescribed foods were not classified as
therapeutic goods. Now, where a food product prescribed under the Australia
and New Zealand Food Standards Code is designated by TGA as having therapeutic
properties, the TGA may declare the product to be a therapeutic good, and
therefore as subject to regulation under the Act.” (30) That includes
vitamins and supplements which the TGA Act regards as medicines and drugs
under the title of therapeutic goods.
The TGA has this to say about
food being classed as medicine; “products which may fit within the
definition of either a food or a medicine [supplements] are referred to a
joint TGA/FOOD STANDARDS Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) committee which
recommends whether the goods should be regulated as a therapeutic good or as
food. This means TGA/FSANZ sends delegates to CODEX to get their orders
about supplement regulations from overseas.
There is no more point to denying it. Australia
is participating in CODEX. But that is not all that has occurred. Starting
with Pan in 2003 the TGA and its trans-national pharmaceutical corporation
allies waged a hostile take over of the Australian supplement industry. Later
that year the Australian government signed a treaty that enabled the TGA and
the pharmaceutical corporations to form what amounts to an offshore
corporation. This would keep the voters at arms’ length and put the
monstrous new “Agency” into the direct international
jurisdiction of the WHO/WTO and CODEX. As a final blow Australian voters
were not even privy to a new TGA amendment bill 2005 that caters to the needs
of the drug corporations. All this because a trade war is raging. Bad news
about drug deaths is getting out. Drug companies need to take over
supplement market to offset their financial losses. The cost of this
desperate corporate last stand is Democracy and Health Freedom. Why
consent to that? When you can do something about it.
and New Zealanders who value their lives, health and freedom can join into Eve
Hillary’s Health Freedom – CODEX campaign and choose an option from the
two pages of easy health freedom suggested initiatives. OR they can create
their own initiatives. Everybody can do something to restore Health and
Freedom for all. See you in the winner’s circle.
(1) “Health horror revealed” by Samantha Maiden
published in the Hobart Mercury 31 July 2001 Wilson RM, Runciman WB,
Gibberd RW, et al. The Quality in Australian Health Care Study. Med J Aust
1995; 163: 458-471.
(2) O’Hara D, Carson NJ. Reporting of adverse events in hospitals in
Victoria 1994-1995. Med J Aust 1997; 166: 460-463.
(3) National Expert Advisory Group on Safety and Quality in Australian Health
Care. Interim report – Commitment to quality enhancement. July 1998.
(4) This figure is based on analysis of data from
the Nutritional Institute of America (NIA)…assessing 2001 data showed that
iatrogenic (caused by doctors and drugs) disease caused 783,936 deaths in
contrast with 699,697 deaths from heart disease and 553,251 from cancer. The
NIA report– “Death by Medicine,” authored by Gary Null, Ph.D., Martin
Feldman, MD, Debora Rasio, MS and Dorothy Smith, Ph.D. – followed a US
Agency for Healthcare Research study published in the Journal of the American
Medical Association (JAMA).
Pan-WHO was Behind the Biggest Vitamin Recall in History?
A three Part Feature Article on who was behind the world’s largest recall.
Filed May 12, 2003 By Eve Hillary www.evehillary.org
Dr. Graham also told the Senate Finance Committee that Vioxx may have
caused 55,000 deaths alone, more than the 28,000 projected by the FDA. Graham
also indicated Vioxx may have caused as many as 160,000 heart attacks, strokes
and deaths, combined.
(8) Internet website KPMG
KPMG. AUDIT. TAX. ADVISORY. bright minds ... company specialising in sales of
foods and pharmaceutical products that has branches through the country. ...
Healthcare in Vietnam ... Most of the leading international pharmaceutical
companies such as Novartis, Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline have set up
representative offices in Vietnam ...
www.euromonitor.com/OTC_Healthcare_in_Vietnam - 32k -
(10) “Pan Boss on Notice” by Jennifer Sexton March
18, 2005 The Australian Newspaper
(11) This author interviewed several manufacturers, none
of whom have given permission to use their names for fear of further problems
with the TGA
(13) “Corporate Casualties” an article by Eve Hillary
(18) From Senate documents: http://18.104.22.168/search?q=cache:Tw0OYiAk9XcJ:www.aph.gov.au/
(19) As stated in the JTA treaty page 8. http://www.jtaproject.com/Downloads/Key%20Documents/TreatyText.pdf
(21) The stakeholders meeting was understandably
frequented by industry, however, meanwhile the main Advertising Council
Committee at the TGA headquarters was infiltrated by the drug industry front
organization representing the interests of the multinational industry
including ASMI, SMI, the Researched Medicines Industry, Medicines
Australia and. These organizations represent the interests of dozens of
multinational drug companies. See link http://www.jtaproject.com/Downloads/Hot%20Topics/IACMeetNov03.pdf
(23) List of attendees at the Interim Advertising Council
Consultation Meeting Hosted by TGA on July 1, 2003.
(24) AMA public submission document to the Joint Standing
Committee on Treaties inquiry into the Agreement between Australia and New
Zealand for the establishment of a Joint Scheme for the regulation of
therapeutic products. 30th April, 2004, by Dr. Robyn
Napier, Representative of the AMA on Trans Tasman interim advertising council.
(29) Tech Update from CHC entitled CODEX, the Facts
without fiction, signed off by Alan Crosthwaite,
Technical director CHC.
New Zealand health Trust
(33) (Author’s Translation:
under that proposed further work on vitamins, a person couldn’t make a
carrot juice or squeeze an orange juice without being likely to exceed CODEX
guidelines for vitamins. This is done so anything exceeding the Committee’s
low recommended daily intake can be classed as a drug and sold for a huge
profit margin in a synthetic form rather than to allow cheap naturally derived
supplements made by local manufacturers to be freely available. In Germany
where CODEX guidelines are already in place drug companies now exclusively
provide miniscule doses of vitamin preparations that must be dispensed by a
chemist and are sold for exorbitant prices. Naturopaths and wholistic
doctors have been prescribing therapeutic doses and even mega doses of
vitamins for over a hundred years with excellent effect. If CODEX
recommendations are adopted, the specialty of wholistic health and wholistic
medicine may be lost or disregarded for the sake of drug company profits.)
(34) Codex refers
to the Codex Alimentarius Commission, a branch of the World Health
Organisation which oversees A CODEX COMMITTEE ON NUTRITION AND FOODS FOR
SPECIAL DIETARY USES. This committee meets annually. Hundreds of
delegates attend ranging from representatives from 48 member countries
to representatives of giant food and pharmaceutical corporations. Dr. Wong
Peng, Director of The Humanitarian Project - Health For All, in Malasia was
present at the 2003 Codex committee held in Bonn Germany.
In a summary of that meeting Dr. Peng writes: “Driven by the interest of
their multinational corporations, particularly from the pharmaceutical and
food manufacturing industries, the EU put forward suggestions that will
eventually protect the interest of these industries.” This Codex
committee purports to decide whether or not consumers in the world can have
vitamins, minerals and other essential nutrients and how much they can have,
and if so, who will provide them.
(35) When I
refer to nutritional supplements and essential nutrients I refer primarily to
all the essential nutrients including minerals, vitamins, amino acids, and
omega oils that are essential to sustaining a physical human body on a daily
basis, without which there would be no health, healing or life. These
are not drugs. They are the nutrients everyone must ingest daily to sustain
physical health and maintain life in a physical body. These essentials have
been found abundantly in food in the past.
agriculture under the influence of multinational chemical companies has been
responsible for the depletion of soils from which poor quality foods are grown
that are depleted of essential nutrients. To retain their health many
people have resorted to taking nutritional supplementation of essential
nutrients. In many countries these supplements are now regulated as drugs due
to the Codex influence upon the regulators. Essential nutrients are not
drugs. They are as essential to life as is oxygen or water. Any excess
nutrients are excreted just like oxygen or water.
The proposed Codex restriction on nutrients is dangerous
and arguably genocidal. It is the same as if a corporation were to deplete the
earth’s atmosphere of oxygen and then monopolise and regulate people’s
supply and intake of “supplemental” oxygen, calling oxygen a “drug”
that can only be purchased at an exorbitant price from the corporation that
caused the problem in the first place. There is no difference.
(36) Hundreds of studies are listed in the following
tests by Dr. M. Wehrbach including: “Textbook of Nutritional
Medicine” by Melvyn. R. Wehrbach MD, assistant clinical Professor School of
Medicine, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA. Third Line Press 1999
(37) “Foundations of Nutritional Medicine” by
Melvyn. R. Wehrbach MD, assistant clinical Professor School of Medicine, UCLA,
Los Angeles, CA. Third Line Press 1999
(38)” Nutritional Influences on Illness”
Melvyn. R. Wehrbach MD, assistant clinical Professor School of Medicine, UCLA,
Los Angeles, CA. Third Line Press 1999
(39) )” Nutritional Influences on Mental
Illness” Melvyn. R. Wehrbach MD, assistant clinical Professor
School of Medicine, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA. Third Line Press
(40) “Healing Through Nutrition, a natural approach to
Treating 50 common illnesses with diet and Nutrients” Melvyn. R. Wehrbach
MD, assistant clinical Professor School of Medicine, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA.
(43) Kiwi is the name of a flightless bird found in
New Zealand, also a slang word meaning New Zealand or New Zealander.
Resources and Information
3. From Senate document http://22.214.171.124/search?q=cache:Tw0OYiAk9XcJ:www.aph.gov.au/Senate/
particularly interesting Senate record.
multiple sources and articles on Codex
(6) WHO/CODEX document www.codexalimentarius.net/download/report/251/al03_26e.pdf
interests&hl=en Codex Committee Bonn Report
(8) NZ health charter commentary http://www.healthcharter.org.nz/images/JTA_Treaty_Sub_2_BLUE.doc.
Codex meeting minutes proposing guidelines for vitamin and mineral supplements
– Australian participation.
medregs.htm+tga+food+standards&hl=en Joint TGA/Food
good account of Berlin Codex meeting.
Important documents on proposed new TGA Amendment Bill 2005
New Zealand Health Trust CODEX information
Sep Hasslberger Codex information site.
(15) Click on for copy of JTA Treaty: http://www.jtaproject.com/Downloads/Key%20Documents/TreatyText.pdf
(16) Click on for government website about Trans Tasman
I am indebted to many of my fellow activists such as Dave
Sloan from the NZ Health Trust and Sepp Hasslberger of Health Supreme, for
providing volumes of accurate and helpful data that when analysed
has regularly strengthened and clarified my conclusions on the matter.
Thank you to the thousands of
people who have supported my Health Freedom Campaign and to those who have
been inspired to start their own. I look forward to living on a planet
free from the tyranny of corporate government. I look forward to seeing
healthy children, free from the ravages of the sickness industry and living in
the kind of Democracy I was once fortunate to have experienced.
I will be conducting the
Health Freedom – Codex campaign and giving Health Freedom Seminars around
Australia to exchange the latest information. Please refer to my website www.evehillary.org
for the schedule of talks and new breaking news as the CODEX issue unfolds.
This author devotes months of research to
each investigative feature article and offers them as a public service to the
community. The author asserts copyright over this work; CODEX- The
Sickness Indu$try’s Last Stand, but this article may be distributed for
non-commercial purposes. For any other purpose please contact the author at;
. More articles can be found on the author’s website; www.evehillary.org
Hillary is a Health Freedom Advocate based in Sydney. She is a medical
analyst, public speaker and writer on issues pertaining to the health care
industry and environmental health. She is the author of Children
of a Toxic Harvest: An Environmental Autobiography, and numerous articles
relating to health issues. Her most recent book is Health Betrayal; Staying
away from the Sickness Industry. Eve
has spent 25 years in health care where she has observed the medical industry
at first hand from the inside. email@example.com