Industry Reacts to FDA’s ODSP Leadership Change

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Washington, D.C.—Effective March 15, 2021, Steve Tave will transition from his role as Director of FDA’s Office of Dietary Supplements Programs (ODSP) to a new position as principal advisor in the Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA).

The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) commended Tave on his commitment to public health and wished him success in his new role. “While CRN is saddened to hear that Steven Tave is leaving his position as director of the Office of Dietary Supplement Programs (ODSP), we congratulate Mr. Tave on his new position in the Office of Regulatory Affairs at FDA,” said Steve Mister, President & CEO of CRN. “CRN is privileged to have had the opportunity to work closely with Mr. Tave over the last five years on initiatives to help strengthen the dietary supplement marketplace. We have valued his candor and transparency, and his willingness to consider industry perspectives when the agency made decisions affecting us. During Mr. Tave’s tenure, he presided over the elevation of ODSP from a Division to an Office, allowing for increased funding to monitor, inspect and enforce the growing dietary supplement marketplace.”

Stepping into the role of acting director of ODSP on March 15 is Cara Welch, Ph.D., who was honored by WholeFoods Magazine in 2016 for being “a reassuring regulatory voice with a deep understanding of our industry.”

“CRN is delighted that Dr. Cara Welch will step into the role of acting director of ODSP starting March 15,” Mister said. “We have also had the opportunity to work closely with Dr. Welch over the years and witness her commitment to strengthen the current regulatory framework for dietary supplements. We look forward to working with her on a number of critical industry initiatives in the future.”

The Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) also issued a statement regarding the changes in leadership calling out ODSP’s “important progress to improve the regulation of dietary supplements, including enhanced enforcement, under the leadership of outgoing director, Steven Tave.”

“We applaud Mr. Tave’s collaborative and constructive efforts with the regulated industry and look forward to working with newly appointed Acting Director Cara Welch,” said Scott Melville, President and CEO of CHPA. “CHPA is committed to industry-agency collaboration that will support and enhance consumer access to safe and beneficial dietary supplements.”

John Troup, PhD, Vice President for Scientific Affairs & Dietary Supplements at CHPA, added, “Dr. Welch has an established record at FDA on supplement issues, and we applaud her appointment as Acting Director of ODSP. As she assumes this leadership role, CHPA looks forward to working together with ODSP to ensure consumers have access to the highest quality dietary supplements with the scientific underpinnings to engender credibility and trust.”

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