UNPA / Sens. Hatch and Whitehouse introduce legislation to enable better enforcement of SARMs by DEA
The following is from UNPA’s Senior Political Advisors Patricia Knight and Peter Reinecke:
Late Tuesday, April 24, Sens. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, and Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., united again to introduce bipartisan legislation that would enable better enforcement by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) over illegal testosterone lookalikes, “selective androgen receptor modulators,” otherwise known as SARMS, the SARMS Control Act of 2018.
UNPA and the dietary supplement industry have become increasingly concerned about these products, which raise serious safety issues, as well as cast a cloud over our industry as they are often marketed illegally as dietary supplements. FDA has issued at least three warning letters against illegally marketed products containing SARMS. In November 2017, UNPA joined with the other trade associations in supporting FDA’s actions against producers of products containing SARMs.
UNPA members may recall that Sens. Hatch and Whitehouse spearheaded the successful 2014 effort to enact the Designer Anabolic Steroids Control Act (DASCA) (PL 113-260), which listed as controlled substances known as anabolic steroid lookalikes and gave DEA authority to schedule highly similar new products.
Modeled after DASCA, the SARMS Control Act of 2018 extends this regulatory paradigm to SARMS, including immediately listing as controlled substances known compounds, providing a mechanism for listing additional highly similar products and prohibiting the import, export, manufacture or distribution of SARM products. This closes a loophole that allows bad actors to make slight chemical alterations to controlled substances to avoid DEA enforcement.
UNPA joined with the other major DS trade associations—AHPA, CRN and CHPA—as well as the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, in a letter endorsing the bill. That statement said, “Each of our organizations has consistently supported efforts to enact and enforce laws to protect consumers, eliminate bad actors marketing illegal substances masquerading as legal products, and prosecute criminals who manufacture and sell them. Your bill will help move toward this goal. The SARMs Control Act is a bold step, adding teeth to prevention and enforcement efforts in the battle against illegal substances being marketed as legitimate products. The dietary supplement industry and USADA stand ready to work with you and all of Congress to deliver a strong bill to the President.”
UNPA is working with the other major supplement trade associations to gain passage of this legislation by Congress. We will continue to update you on our progress.