Durban, South Africa—This monthly section devoted to environmental news wrapped up last year’s coverage with a preview of the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which was held here from November 28th to December 9th. Now, those talks recede into the past and their results become clearer as we move forward: While averting a disastrous lapse in climate efforts and perhaps laying some important groundwork, the world’s nations put off ambitious action on climate change until a later date. Meanwhile, in the aftermath of the talks, Canada has chosen to remove itself from the existing international framework for emissions reduction.

Edwardsville, IL—A hearing has brewed over the accusations of a man who found a mouse in a can of mainstream citrus-flavored-soda in 2009 and sent it to the company who has since offered a bizarre defense.

 

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.

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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.