The regulatory agency announced the ban on June 4, and it covers the manufacture, importation, marketing, advertising and distribution of all foods containing Moringa oleifera.
The ban is valid throughout the country and covers both foods containing Moringa oleifera as a constituent, in any form of presentation, such as tea, capsules, etc., as well as the food itself.
“The measure was motivated by the fact that there was no evaluation and safety proof of Moringa oleifera use in food,” explained ANVISA (translated from Portuguese). “In addition, it has been found that there are numerous products named and / or constituted of Moringa oleifera that have been irregularly marketed and published with several therapeutic claims not allowed for food, such as cancer cure, diabetes and cardiovascular disease treatment among many others.”
ANVISA has advised consumers who have purchased food with Moringa oleifera to not use them.
For the original announcement (in Portuguese), please click here.
According to the American Botanical Council (ABC), Moringa, also known as horseradish tree, is a fast growing and drought resistant tree, which can be found across a wide geographical and climatic range, from India and Pakistan to Africa, the Philippines, and across the Americas.
Bioactive compounds in the leaves and seeds may help lower blood pressure, while extracts from leaves, roots, and flowers may offer liver benefits. Various plant parts are also reported to have antibacterial activity.