Rt Hon Lord Lilley

    Lilley supports local health food shops against Euro-regulation
    Vitamin & mineral tablets used by local people under threat

    Following petitions and letters from hundreds of local users of natural health supplements, Peter Lilley – MP for Hitchin and Harpenden – has voiced his concern over a new ruling by European judges that will effectively prevent local health food shops in Hitchin, Harpenden, Redbourn and Wheathampstead from supplying these vitamins and health foods.

    Peter Lilley has received hundreds of letters on this issue and in conjunction with local health stores such as Holland & Barrett, he has campaigned against the new regulations.

    Peter Lilley said: “The Court ruling ? which contradicts the advice of the Advocate General – is a blow to all those people who regularly use food supplements and vitamins. As many as five thousand products will potentially be banned from local stores. Tony Blair has let down millions of vitamins and food supplements users, by failing to lobby the European Union effectively to secure a British opt-out from this unnecessary red tape.

    “Now that Britain holds the EU presidency I hope the Prime Minister will intervene swiftly to re-open the text of this legislation in order to secure a British opt-out. I will continue to campaign to save the vitamin and health supplements that people across Hitchin and Harpenden have been using safely for years.?

    Notes to Editors

    The European Food Supplements Directive was passed in 2003 amidst considerable controversy. The measure paves the way for dramatic changes to the vitamins on sale in this country. Many will have to be reformulated; products such as 1 gram Vitamin C tablets that are frequently used in the cold season and the mineral Boron, important for strong bones and teeth, are set to become illegal once European laws passed recently are fully introduced. This is all happening in the name of harmonisation, not safety.

    Conservatives have been campaigning against the directive, in conjunction with the vitamins industry, food shops and public figures like actress Jenny Seagrove and Cherie Blair?s friend, Carole Caplin. An online petition, organised by Consumers for Health Choice, can be signed via:

    After reviewing the evidence presented by both sides, European Court of Justice Advocate-General Leendert Geelhoed said in April 2005 that in his opinion the directive infringed legal guidelines; but the judges on the Court itself overruled him on 12 July 2005 and upheld the directive.