FWD 2 Botanical Adulterants Monitor


Dear Reader

The consequences of the investigations into the authenticity of dietary supplements by the New York State Attorney General (NY AG) Eric Schneiderman continue to impact the dietary supplement industry and have increased the emphasis on the need for appropriate test methods to detect botanical ingredient adulteration. Following the NY AG’s investigation into devil’s claw supplements, the United Natural Products Alliance (UNPA) organized an analytical summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, which was held in November 2015. The goals of the summit were to update participants on the latest developments with regard to the NY AG’s actions, to discuss analytical technologies to authenticate dietary supplement ingredients, and to detect adulteration, with emphasis on DNA-based methods.


  Stefan Gafner, PhD
Chief Science Officer, ABC
Technical Director, ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program

ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program

Recent News 

©2016 Steven FosterBlack Cohosh Laboratory Guidance Document Published by ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 

The extensively peer-reviewed black cohosh (Actaea racemosa, Ranunculaceae) root and rhizome Laboratory Guidance Document (LGD), containing a review of macroscopic, microscopic, and chemical methods to authenticate black cohosh crude raw materials and extracts, was released in November 2015. 

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Canadian Health Food Association Underwrites ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 

The Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA), Canada’s largest trade association dedicated to natural health and organic products, has endorsed the ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program

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ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program Welcomes New Supporters and Underwriters 

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Regulatory Alerts

USFDA Modifies Language about Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients Masquerading as Dietary Supplement.

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Upcoming Events

Below are descriptions and links to some of the upcoming conferences, seminars, and workshops that may be of interest to learn more on adulteration.

UNPA Raw Materials Summit
Salt Lake City, UT: February 23rd-24th, 2016

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Previous Issues of “Botanical Adulterants Monitor”

Available here.

Science Update

Investigation into the Authenticity of Commercial Rhodiola rosea Products by 1H NMR, HPLC-MS/MS, and HPTLC

Booker A, Jalil B, Frommenwiler D, et al. The authenticity and quality of Rhodiola rosea products. Phytomedicine. October 31, 2015; [epub ahead of print]. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2015.10.006.

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Distinction between Stephania tetrandra and Aristolochia fangchi by Hyperspectral Imaging and UHPLC-MS

Tankeu S, Vermaak I, Chen W, Sandasi M, Viljoen A. Differentiation between two ‘‘fang ji” herbal medicines, Stephania tetrandra and the nephrotoxic Aristolochia fangchi, using hyperspectral imaging. Phytochemistry. November 26, 2015; [epub ahead of print]. doi: 10.1016/j.phytochem.2015.11.008.

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Identification of Species from the Genus Ganoderma Using the Internal Transcribed Spacer 2 Region of the Mushroom DNA

Liao B, Chen X, Han J, et al. Identification of commercial Ganoderma (lingzhi) species by ITS2 sequences. Chin Med. 2015;10:22. doi: 10.1186/s13020-015-0056-7.

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Review of Recent Conferences Focusing on Botanical Ingredient Adulteration

UNPA Analytical Summit in Salt Lake City, Utah

The United Natural Products Alliance (UNPA) organized an analytical summit on November 5-6, 2015, in Salt Lake City, Utah, in response to increased herb and dietary supplement industry concerns about the identity and ...



BRAMA Training Modules IV and V in Aqaba, Jordan

Botanical Risk Assessment Training in the Mediterranean Area (BRAMA) is a 40-month project co-financed by the European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI)* as a cross-border cooperation project in the Mediterranean Sea Basin area with four partners ...



Adulteration and Fraud in Food Ingredients and Dietary Supplements Workshop in Rockville, Maryland

This workshop, co-sponsored by the American Botanical Council, the Food Protection and Defense Institute, and the United States Pharmacopeia (USP), was held at the USP headquarters in Rockville, Maryland, from December 3-4, 2015.



Useful Links and Resources

For more information and updates on the work of the three partner organizations of the ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program, please visit ABC at www.herbalgram.org, AHP at www.herbal-ahp.org, and NCNPR at www.pharmacy.olemiss.edu/ncnpr.

Other Helpful Resources and Links

AHPA Botanical Identity References Compendium:

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About the

The ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program is a consortium of independent nonprofit organizations whose mission relates to education, scientific research, and quality of botanical dietary ingredients and related plant-derived materials. The consortium is headed by three nonprofit groups dealing with education and research on medicinal herbs and other beneficial plants: the American Botanical Council, the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia, and the National Center for Natural Products Research at the University of Mississippi. The program is underwritten or endorsed by more than 130 natural products industry companies, independent analytical laboratories, contract research organizations, nonprofit and professional organizations, trade associations, accredited institutions of education in natural medicine, law firms, and media companies that are involved in the production, supply, manufacture, distribution, marketing, analysis, research, and/or education of herbal dietary ingredients and supplements, in the United States and internationally. All publications of the Program are available free-access on its homepage including the “Botanical Adulterants Monitor,” an e-newsletter that conveys Program news, regulatory updates, and recent scientific publications related to adulteration, contamination, identity, and authenticity of botanical raw materials, extracts, and essential oils. Companies, organizations, foundations, and/or individuals interested in supporting this program are invited to contact Ms. Denise Meikel, ABC Development Director, at (512) 926-4900, ext. 120, or by email.


Thank You to Our Supporters

Underwriters and Supporters of the ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program (as of Jan 17, 2016)*

Financial Underwriters

21st Century Healthcare

AdvoCare International L.P.

Agilent Technologies, Inc.

Aloecorp, Inc.

Amen Clinics

Amway/Nutrilite Health Institute

Artemis International, Inc.

Atrium Innovations

Aveda Corporation

Beachbody, LLC

BI Nutraceuticals


Bionorica SE


Botanical Liaisons

Bruker BioSpin


Cepham, Inc.

Chemi Nutra

CNCA Health

Crila Health

dicentra, Inc.

Doctor’s Best

Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps

DolCas Biotech, LLC

Douglas Laboratories

Draco Natural Products

DSM Nutritional Products, Inc.

Emerson Ecologics

Enzymatic Therapy, Inc.

Ethical Naturals, Inc.

Eu Yan Sang International




Flavex Naturextrakte GmbH


Gaia Herbs

GE Nutrients, Inc.

Global Health Industries

GNC, Inc.

Healthy Lifestyle Brands, LLC

Helios Corp.

Herb Pharm

Herbalife International, Inc.

Horphag Research


Indena USA, Inc.

Indfrag Limited

Ingredient Identity

Jarrow Formulas

Layn USA, Inc.


Markan Global Enterprises, Inc.

Martin Bauer, Inc.

MediHerb / Integria Healthcare

Metagenics, Inc.

Natreon, Inc.

Natural Alternatives International, Inc.

Natural Factors Nutritional Products, Inc./Bioclinic Naturals

Financial Underwriters

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage

Natural Remedies Pvt. Ltd.

Nature's Sunshine Products

Nature's Way

Naturex, Inc.

NBTY, Inc.

New Chapter, Inc.

The New Frontier Foundation Fund of the Greater Cedar Rapids CommunityFoundation

Ningbo Greenhealth Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

Novel Ingredients

NOW Foods

Nu Skin Enterprises/Pharmanex

Organic India

Ortho Molecular Products

Pacific Nutritional Inc.

Paragon Laboratories

Pathway International Pty Limited

Perrigo Company

Pharmatoka SAS

Pharmavite, LLC

Phoenix Formulations

PLT Health Solutions, Inc.

Polyphenolics, Division of Constellation Brands, Inc.

Pure Encapsulations

Rainbow Light Nutritional Systems

RFI Ingredients, LLC

Rosenbush and Zimmerman Family Fund

Sabinsa Corporation

Schwabe North America


Shaklee Corp.

Standard Process, Inc.

Strategic Sourcing, Inc.

Thorne Research, Inc.

Traditional Medicinals, Inc.

Triarco Industries, Inc.


Univera, Inc.

Valensa International

V.D.F. FutureCeuticals

Verdure Sciences

Vitamin Shoppe

Whole Foods Market

Trade Associations

Australian Self Medication Industry (Australia)

Australian Tea Tree Industry Association (Australia)

British Herbal Medicine Association (UK)

Canadian Health Food Association (Canada)

Complementary Medicines Australia (Australia)

Consumer Healthcare Products Association (US)

Council for Responsible Nutrition (US)

International Alliance of Dietary/Food Supplement Associations (IADSA)

Natural Products Association (US)

Natural Products New Zealand (NZ)

United Natural Products Alliance (US)

Nonprofit/Professional Associations

Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine

American Association of Naturopathic Physicians

American Herbalists Guild

American Society of Pharmacognosy

AOAC International

Council of Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia Convention of the United States

Integrative Healthcare Policy Consortium

Irish Register of Herbalists (IRE)

National Institute of Medical Herbalists (UK)

Natural Health Products Research Society of Canada (NHPRS Canada)

Personalized Lifestyle Medicine Institute

Society for Medicinal Plant and Natural Product Research (GA)


Bastyr University

Boucher Institute for Naturopathic Medicine

Hong Kong Baptist University’s School of Chinese Medicine

National College of Natural Medicine

Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine

University of Bridgeport College of Naturopathic Medicine
Third-Party Analytical Laboratories

Alkemist Labs

AuthenTechnologies LLC

Bent Creek Institute

British Columbia Institute of Technology


Covance Laboratories

Eurofins Scientific Inc.

Flora Research Labs

NSF International

Spectrix Labs

Tampa Bay Analytical


Delicious Living


Functional Ingredients

Holistic Primary Care

Informa Exhibitions US

Integrator Blog

Media Relations, Inc.

Modern Healthcare Practitioner

Natural Foods Merchandiser

Natural Products INSIDER


Nutraceuticals World


Nutrition Business Journal

Nutrition Industry Executive

Nutritional Outlook

Vitamin Retailer

WholeFoods Magazine


Law Firms & Regulatory Consultants

Amin Talati & Upadhye, LLC

Greenberg Traurig, LLP (James Prochnow)

Law Office of Holly Bayne, P.C.

Robert Forbes & Associates

Susan Brienza, LLC

Ullman, Shapiro & Ullman, LLP

Contract Research Organizations

KGK Synergize


Research Institutes

Korean Ginseng Research Institute

Shanghai Research Center for TCM Modernization/Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica of the Chinese Academy of Sciences


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