May 2, 2011
Under a European directive, herbal medicines on sale in shops will have to be registered.
Products must meet safety, quality and manufacturing standards, and come with information outlining possible side-effects.
The Medicines and Health care Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said there had been 211 applications for approval, with 105 granted so far and the rest still under consideration.
Some herbal practitioners fear the move could threaten their businesses.
Commonly used ingredients already registered include echinacea, used against colds, St John’s wort, used by some for depression and anxiety, and valerian, claimed as a natural remedy for insomnia.