Well-known sports supplement ingredient banned in Australia by TGA

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 2nd August 2012

A substance that is commonly found in many sports supplements has been banned in Australia. The announcement to ban the ingredient, known as DMAA (1,3-dimethylamylamine), interestingly came via the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).

The TGA announced that DMAA (1,3-dimethylamylamine) had been included in Appendix C of the Poisons Standard. The inclusion in Appendix C means that the sale, supply and use of DMAA is prohibited throughout Australia.

The TGA made its decision in response to safety concerns about the abuse of DMAA and following advice from the Advisory Committee on Medicines Scheduling (ACMS) and public consultation.

After this decision by the TGA, it becomes the responsibility of State and Territory governments to implement any necessary changes to legislation. State and Territory authorities are responsible for enforcing these laws, and any laws relating to foods and food supplements.

DMAA acts as a stimulant and has been found in pre-workout sports supplements and also in “party pills” to provide an adrenaline-like high. However, it has been linked with various adverse health effects including high blood pressure, headaches, vomiting, cerebral haemorrhage, stroke and death.

New Zealand banned DMAA from all products in April 2012 after reports of its adverse effects.

Leading Australian food law expert, Joe Lederman of FoodLegal, said that it was interesting a food ingredient was banned through the umbrella of the TGA. He said that in previous cases, such a decision might have emanated from a food safety agency such as Food Standards Australia New Zealand in liaison with State and Territory agencies such as the New South Wales Food Authority.

Mr Lederman said, “It was interesting the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) also missed the opportunity to act,” adding that it was usually the responsibility of the ACCC, as Australia’s premier consumer protection agency, to impose and monitor product bans and product recalls.

FoodLegal Health Claim Hazards Symposium

Information on the regulatory controls over health claims for food and innovative food ingredients are to be addressed at the FoodLegal Health Claim Hazards Symposium on August 21, 2012. Pre-booking is essential and can be done online via FoodLegal.