Industry turning food supplements media bashing around

By Shane Starling

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Vitamin d, Vitamin d deficiency

The positive discrimination food supplements reporting campaign being mounted by the head of the Irish Health Trade Association (IHTA) has had a successful start with Irish and UK newspapers picking up stories brought to its attention by the IHTA.

As part of a campaign commenced last week, IHTA chief executive officer, Dr Alan Ruth, emailed about 60 UK and Irish journalists about research linking vitamin D deficiency and baby health problems and skin cancer.

The Daily Mail​ picked up on the story yesterday, ​writing:Testing at 12 and 20 weeks of pregnancy revealed that as many as 96 per cent of the women had an insufficient level of vitamin D in their blood. Examination also revealed that at these test points, 35 per cent could be classified as vitamin D deficient at 12 weeks and 44 per cent at 20 weeks.”

Other papers have picked up stories that have featured in Dr Ruth’s emails including The Irish Times, The Belfast Telegraph​ and The Independent​.

The results have been very encouraging so far, in that shortly after sending out this positive news, a number of related articles appeared in the Irish and British press,”​ Ruth said.

“The articles about sunbathing are very positive about vitamin D. Whilst I cannot claim to have made all these articles appear; I think that the timing of their appearance is more than a coincidence.”

He added: “My intense burst of positive communications to the press was an experiment that I felt compelled to carry out. Bearing in mind my very limited resources, I am pleased with the results.

Just imagine what we could achieve, if our industry was to combine resources to mount a comprehensive and coordinated pan European initiative/programme to distribute positive news to consumers (via the press).”

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