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Authentic Chinese Herbal Medicine since 1969
Plum Flower® Herbal Teas

No More 'Best Before' Dates on Powder Extracts

May 10, 2013


Dear Customers,

As of May 15th, Mayway has decided to not use 'Expiration' or 'Best Before' dates (BBD) on our herbs and herbal formulas in powder extract form. We previously discontinued the use of such dating on our raw herb products in 2011. We were using this dating to indicate the shelf life of our products. However, the dates assigned to these products were somewhat arbitrary and were expediently chosen rather than scientifically determined. Although this practice is common-place in the herbal marketplace, Mayway has chosen to change its position, from a place of integrity. We do not want to mislead our customers.

In addition, the FDA final GMP rule for dietary supplements does not require the establishment of expiration dates for products. However, a company that chooses to display an expiration or best before date, on any product, is required to have scientific, stability testing results that support the published shelf life of that product. We do not have this type of data for our raw herbs, raw herb powders, or our 5:1 powder extracts. Additionally, acquiring the required data is cost-prohibitive and/or simply, not possible.

In contrast, our teapills and tablets are manufactured by pharmaceutical-GMP factories in China, who are able to properly test their products, and who have a long history and experience in the determination of shelf life of their manufactured goods.

For more information on the challenges of shelf life and stability testing with regards to Chinese herbs, see “Quality Matters” in this month’s Mayway Mailer. To see the FDA’s relevant comments see: The Code of Federal Regulations 21 CFR Part 111 Final Subpart E, K. Comments on Shelf Life;

Yvonne Lau, President
Mayway USA