Party Pill Marketing In ChCh Needs Regulation
23 December 2004
Party pill marketing in Christchurch needs regulatory attention says STANZ
The Social Tonic Association of New Zealand (STANZ) is calling for the Government to enforce existing regulations regarding the labelling of party pills following a number of medical cases in Christchurch.
STANZ chairman Matt Bowden said that inappropriate labelling could be the key reason why people in Christchurch are unknowingly taking excessive doses.
“The fact that there’s been a disproportionately high number of incidents in Christchurch compared to the rest of the country is worrying. Something needs to be done,” Mr Bowden said.
"Products being sold under the dietary supplement regulations must be clearly labelled. If an unlabelled product is being sold then it is illegal," Mr Bowden said.
Mr Bowden called for government agencies to enforce the existing law before claiming that they needed more rules and regulations.
Mr Bowden said that STANZ agreed with Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, Alistair Humphrey who was reported as saying that people who went to hospital after taking [legal] party pills had often drunk a lot of alcohol and also taken illegal drugs which they did not admit to.
”We also agree with Dr Humphrey and Associate Minister of Health Hon. Jim Anderton, who say that there are other things on the street causing problems, ‘not least of which is alcohol which remains our number one problem’,” he said.
"There is clearly a local problem in Christchurch that warrants the urgent attention of the government's regulators," Mr Bowden said.
STANZ is an association of socially responsible members of the social tonics industry in New Zealand. They have developed an industry code of practice that is already helping to improve the quality and presentation of social tonics such as benzylpiperazine (BZP), the predominant ingredient in party pills.
STANZ has submitted to the Health Select Committee that there should be age restrictions placed on the sale of BZP, as well as upper limits for the amount of BZP in individual servings and per packet.
According to Regulation 4 of the Dietary Supplement Regulations 1985, dietary supplements not to be sold unless properly labeled. It states that “no person shall sell any package or container containing any dietary supplement, or any dietary supplement contained in a package or container, if the package or container:
(a) Does not bear a label containing all the particulars required by these regulations to be contained on a label relating to such package or container; or
(b) Bears a label containing anything that is prohibited by these regulations from appearing on a label relating to such package or container; or
(c) Bears a label containing any particulars that are not in the position, manner, and style required by these regulations in respect of a label relating to such package or container.
Regulation 5 details General requirements for labelling of dietary supplements.
Regulation 6 details Form and manner of labeling.
Regulations 7 - 9 detail, Size of letters, Principal display panel, and Consumer information panel.