Author Rich McKeown addresses United Natural Products Alliance

win-win orientationRich McKeown, Leavitt Partners CEO and co-author of Finding Allies, Building Alliances: 8 Elements that Bring—and Keep—People Together, addressed with United Natural Products Alliance on October 25, 2013 and asked the question: “What do you do to contribute to the overall health of the population?” McKeown explained that the natural products industry is well positioned to prove its value proposition because the US health care industry is begging for cost reductions and the industry provides wellness-improvement products. He recommended that aggressive self-regulation along with collaboration with governmental regulators is needed to thwart potential future onerous regulatory oversight. “All it takes is one or two companies acting inappropriately to cause an industry-wide problem,” McKeown said. “Whenever that happens, Congress tends to overreact and that would be very damaging to the industry as a whole.”

McKeown, who served as Mike Leavitt’s Chief of Staff at the US Department of Health and Human Services, said the FDA would like more regulatory ability but budget constraints currently hamper that focus. “Rather than worry about ‘gotcha’ inspections from the FDA,” McKeown noted, “the natural products industry needs to consider industry-level alliances for self-regulation that will result in a partnership with the FDA rather than an adversarial relationship.”

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