§ Mrs. Renée Short
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will ensure that the potentially-dangerous vitamin supplements B15 and B17 are withdrawn from the British market.
§ Mr. Geoffrey Finsberg
Amygdalin — "B17" —occurs naturally and harmlessly in many common foodstuffs, but its sale in the form of tablets or capsules containing potentially dangerous quantities of the substance has become a cause for concern. The Committee on Safety of Medicines recently advised that all products other than normally accepted foodstuffs, containing amygdalin should be brought within the ambit of the Medicines Act 1968 and should be available only in pharmacies on prescription. I have decided to act upon this advice, the statutory consultations required are now in progress with a view to laying the necessary draft order before Parliament for approval.
"B15" is ill-defined and its composition is variable, but there is at present no evidence to justify our restricting the sale of B 15 as a food supplement on safety grounds.