NAFDAC guides herbal medicine practitioners to follow GMP guidelines

The National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has directed herbal medicine practitioners to abide by the agency’s rules guiding their practice and good packaging. Since herbal medicine had been embraced worldwide, there is need for herbal medicine practitioners in Nigeria to package their end products in line with international best standards as they could be a good source of foreign exchange.

Quality cannot be introduced to a finished product but it can be build-in right away from the raw material to the end. That is why NAFDAC is concerned about the practitioners adhering to Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP). So, with that, they would know that quality is built into the product. All the practitioners are advised to ensure 100 percent cleanliness in their manufacturing rooms, ventilation of the rooms, proper documentation of each herb, processes involved and herbal medicine produced.

In a paper titled, `Extant Regulatory Control for Herbal Advertisement’, NAFDAC’s Deputy Director, noted that all publicly advertised herbal products must be registered with NAFDAC. There had been growing patronage of herbal products by Nigerians within the past 10 years. The only differences between herbal medicines from China, India, Pakistan and that from Nigeria were proper processing and packaging. This has sensitized the need to package their products in a more dignifying manner by keeping their manufacturing plants clean and following the best standards of processing the raw materials for the end product to meet international standards.