March 3, 2010 -- Eight major fish oil-supplement producers are putting their customers at risk by selling them products that tests show contained carcinogenic chemicals, according to a new lawsuit.
Seven of the eight companies provided statements on the lawsuit. Below is the full text of the statements. One of the companies, Solgar, did not respond for comment.
As a matter of practice, we do not comment on pending litigation. Inquiries regarding this matter should be directed to the product manufacturers.
While we have not had an opportunity to review the filing, GNC is confident that its cod liver oil product, as well as all other GNC fish oil products, are safe and appropriate for use by all consumers.
GNC's cod liver oil product meets all relevant regulatory standards for ingredient safety, including California's Proposition 65.
It's also worth noting that the only GNC product cited in this litigation, GNC Liquid Norwegian Cod Liver Oil, scored among the lowest of the 10 products tested.
GNC only sources its cod liver oil from reputable suppliers. We require our suppliers to provide certificates of analysis stating specifically that their shipments meet all applicable regulatory standards.
GNC also follows regulatory and industry standards for appropriate labeling of all of its products and will continue to do so.
Rite Aid Statement
We can't comment because we haven't seen the lawsuit yet.
Omega Protien Statement
Pharmative, Manufacturer of Nature Made, Statement
Nature Made's omega-3 fish oil products use only the oil from sustainable, wild ocean fish, and do not use oil from farm-raised fish. Each batch of fish oil is processed using state-of-the-art molecular distillation or absorbent technology to remove PCBs and dioxins, which guarantees purity and potency.
All batches of Nature Made fish oil are guaranteed to pass the stringent industry standards of the Council for Responsible Nutrition's Voluntary Monograph for Omega-3 Fatty Acids. These standards were created to reflect state-of-the-art processing and purification techniques for fish oil. In addition, Nature Made's fish oil products have been awarded the United States Pharmacopeia ("USP") Verification Program mark for omega-3 fish oil purity, potency and quality. The USP is an authoritative and independent, not-for-profit, standard setting organization that promotes public health. This USP verification requires ongoing third-party product testing and manufacturing inspections and audits to ensure quality.
Nature Made Fish Oil received a "Best Choice" rating based on a survey conducted by Environmental Defense, a leading national nonprofit organization representing more than 400,000 members, when the organization evaluated fish oil supplements for environmental contaminants.
Fish oil has many health benefits. Yet, most American diets fall short of critically important omega-3 fatty acids. Fish oil supplements offer a convenient, inexpensive choice for consumers who want to incorporate fish oil into their diet. More information on Nature Made fish oil is available at NatureMade.com. If consumers have questions regarding any Nature Made products, they should call 1-800-276-2878.
Now Foods Statement
NOW Foods has been investigating the concerns raised by Manthey, Chiles, and the Mateel Justice Foundation for a number of months and has worked with environmental groups and our suppliers to ensure that our products are safety tested. We agree that the current testing methods for PCB's are highly variable and incomplete; currently there are no universal standards to test for the 209 different compounds that are included under the term PCB. However, we believe we are in compliance with the most widely followed industry and regulatory standards.
If consumers are concerned about this issue, we suggest that they look for products that are molecularly distilled and made from small fish with short life spans, such as anchovies and sardines. The majority of the Omega-3 concentrates on the market and in our product assortment are made from these smaller fish.