SERVING THE HEALTH INTERESTS OF THE WHOLE POPULATION
The Health Products Association of Southern Africa (HPA) has come a long way in achieving its objectives since its inception in 1978.
As the complementary medicines (CAMS) market continues to expand, mounting regulatory and economic pressure are making the presence of this established representative body increasingly invaluable.
The world market for dietary supplements is estimated to be US$50 million per annum. The South African market represents approximately 1% of this. Currently worth an impressive R2,5 billion it is growing exponentially at a steady pace of 12-15% per annum.
A professional and respected body, the HPA acts as a mouthpiece for the CAMS market, and also functions as a watchdog, promoting ethical behaviour, responsible regulations of the industry and good manufacturing practices in an effort to raise global standards and reassure the public of the safety of health products. The HPA is also working towards organizing the industry as a unified voice, liaising with various partners and government bodies as well as dealing with legislation issues.
The HPA provides an educational forum for consumers, manufacturers, distributors and all related players in the field. The HPA has access to data from around the world that details current developments in nutritional, supplemental and dietetic fields, and is in the process of developing a health industry reference library.
Various events - seminars, conventions and exhibitions - are hosted by the HPA, with the aim of updating the industry and consumers on the latest scientific information regarding health and related topics.
The role played by the media in publicising health product information is critical, one that the HPA endeavours to support and monitor with the goal of promoting responsible and informed reporting in order to protect the health products industry, the retailers and the consumer.
The HPA also works to keep health product advertising and promotional campaigns free of misleading claims that could negatively affect the industry's reputation.