Lysaker, NorwayResearchers from Maastricht University in the Netherlands have released some preliminary results from a recent trial on a branded natural vitamin K2 ingredient (MenaQ7 from NattoPharma, based here).

Rockville, MD—The U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP) has announced some additions to the latest version of its Food Chemicals Codex (FCC).

Orlando, FL—The Southeast Natural Products Association (SENPA) held its annual SOHO Exhibition, here, in December. With over 300 exhibitors (including 100 new ones), the event was even bigger than last year. “Exhibits sold in [the 2011] show increased by 10% ending with a total of 320 companies participating,” stated Carylene Reed, executive director of SENPA. “The show sold out in October and we decided to add an additional eight booths to accommodate everyone.”

Washington, D.C.—The U.S. Department of Defense announced it will not take any chances with supplements containing DMAA, as it has decided to pull such products from stores on its bases, according to Army Times. This ban included GNC shops on bases worldwide, and will stay in effect until an investigation is completed.

New York, NY—Shoppers may not consider natural health and beauty care (HBC) products discretionary purchases; rather, they’re essential. According to market research firm Packaged Facts, sales in the natural HBC market hit $8.5 billion in 2011. This marks a double-digit growth (11%) since 2005.

Promotions, new hires, retirements and more.

Silver Spring, MD—The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is cracking down on companies selling over-the-counter (OTC) HCG as weight-loss aids by making the product illegal, citing that fads and diets promising fast weight-loss often do so with unsupported claims and potentially unhealthy ways.

Harvests of maize, rice and wheat, the three leading grain crops in the world, last year came in at levels below those of 2008, marking an overall dip in production. While both maize and rice set record production highs, the dramatic drop-off in wheat production left the total for all three lower, according to research found in Vital Signs Online, a publication of the Worldwatch Institute.

Savannah, GA—The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), the policy recommendation body for the National Organic Program (NOP), decided on several organic food issues at its most recent meeting, including sulfites in wine, outdoor access for poultry and, controversially, DHA algal oil and ARA fungal oil as organic additives. The move to allow Martek Biosciences Corporation’s branded life’sDHA ingredient, derived from algae, and life’sARA, from a species of fungus, in certified organic food products was met with some criticism.