Due to the financial position this country are in, the Business and Skills Ministers are doing what they can to promote businesses and skills training in the UK.
On the other hand, we have the cretins who run the Medicines and Healthcare agency, constantly introducing new regulations which drive people out of work. In the Herbal products marketplace several companies have already gone bust and many are hovering on the brink. The new regulations emanating from the EU will further increase this loss of jobs and important skills.
In recent years, due to crazy EU regulations, we have seen a huge reduction in companies that deal in essential oils for the cosmetics trades. Large companies have closed or relocated to India the USA and other places. All because regulations were accepted by Government departments without a second thought as to their effects on jobs. Big companies can't be bothered to fight the Eurocrates, they simply up sticks and move to places where the regulations are not enforced.
Herbal practitioners are giving up their businesses at a fast rate and many more will cease working at the trade if new regulations on practitioners come in. It should be pointed out here that many of these therapists currently work part time and earn just enough to stop them signing on as unemployed.
The Medicines and Healthcare agency have a large section of their staff and advisors who are University Professors and ex drug company employees. These people have a mind set of only understanding those organisations ways of doing things. They follow EU guidelines coming from undemocratic EU advisory committees to the letter. If these people ever give a second thought to what their activities are doing to UK small businesses is doubtful. After all, if you are a highly placed University professor what do they know about such matters. Most go from mums apron strings, to a good school, then to University where they live in the cloistered world of academia.
The latest position is that in August 2012 the 'Human Medicines Regulation Act' became law overtaking the 1968 Medicines Act. This new legislation incorporated into UK law the EU regulations on substances deemed to have a "medicinal activity". This leaves the interpretation of what constitutes a licensable medicinal substance in the hands of that biased and incompetent organisation called The Department of Health - sub division the MHRA. If anyone thinks the statement is wrong, it is suggested you refer to the recent string of scandals involving that Ministry such as the Stafford hospital scandal and the care and quality commission.
The MHRA have sent warning letters to some small herb producers about the situation of product licenses. Many of those suppliers are home businesses who may grow and gather herbs and then resell to the public, something that has been going on for hundreds of years without significant problems. Only large producers can afford the license fees and thus the small ones are quickly packing up business. Some have gone to other EU countries where the crazy EU laws are not enforced. Over a period of time, traditional herbalists will loose access to herbs that they cannot produce themselves. The double edged sword is that already the MHRA have put on the 'prescriptions only' list some of herbalists most valuable plants. Over time that list will grow until herbalist are left with few effective remedies.
This Government are still allowing the Civil Servants at the respective Ministries to continue ploughing on with the policies set in place during the last Government. We are having to accept one Ministry doing one thing, and another the very opposite. Net result vast waste of money, businesses, skills and jobs. I expect this crazy way of running a country applies to many other areas than herbal medicine.