France's Agency for the Safety of Health Products (AFSSAPS) has suspended the sale of products and preparations containing kava, a medicinal plant from the islands in the Southern Pacific known for its sedative and hypnotic properties.
The French agency took the decision to ban the sale of kava products because of recent health concerns in Germany and Switzerland.
The AFSSAPS said that kava may be linked to one death and four liver transplants. The liver problems can occur months after using kava products, and in some cases can occur after discontinuation.
The agency recommended that those taking kava should stop, although homeopathic treatments may still be sold in dilutions equal or higher than 5CH.