There's a somewhat alarming development afoot in Canada relating to the sale, use and dispensation of herbal medicines and "natural" supplements. We've been following the discussion on herbal product regulation here in the United States, and looked briefly at the impact that Canadian legislation passed in 2004 (very similar to the FDA's current rules) and the impact it's had on herbalists.
Now, the Canadian Ministry of Health is attempting to pass a bill that would radically step up enforcement of the new, stringent rules. These regulations are largely based on the framework of the Codex Alimentarius, a global agreement designed to 'harmonize' the preparation and dosing of various medicinal substances, from vitamins to herbs. Therefore, herbal products would have to be of ineffective potency and completely divorced from any health claims to be able to skirt this new legislation. No longer interested in regulating only drugs, the Canadian government wants to broaden its scope of oversight to all 'therapeutic substances' with this new law. Oh, and it steps up resources for enforcement and lowers the requirements for search and seizure (beware the herb police).
Many are showing righteous concern (here's a good legal summary from a concerned perspective). If the trends continue, we could see this coming in the United States soon.