• Upcoming: Prescription Ovaltine

    Posted June 20, 2011: by Bill Sardi

    June 16, 2011 The New York Times

    Extra Vitamins? A Great Idea, Except in Denmark


    For the last seven years, Marianne Orum has owned a narrow store in a charming street in the heart of this Danish capital.

    But in January Ms. Orum got a phone call from government food inspectors. Tipped off by a competitor, they told her she was selling products that were fortified with vitamins or minerals, and such products require government approval, which she did not have, so she would have to take them off the shelves.

    The culprits were Ovaltine; a shredded wheat cereal called Shreddies; a malt drink called Horlicks; and Marmite, the popular yeast byproduct that functions in England as a sandwich spread.

    Application for approval, she said, costs almost $1,700 per product, and time for approval can run up to six months or more; the fee is not refunded if the product is rejected.

    “Astrid Bork Andersen, senior adviser to the Danish Food and Drink Federation, which represents about 250 food companies. “However, …is banking on the harmonization of laws concerning vitamin and mineral supplements, which were agreed upon by the European Union in 2006. The new rules are now expected to take effect in mid-2012, when upper limits for supplements are defined.

    Prescription: Ovaltine

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