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Natural health products get their chance to prove themselves this winter following cough medicine law change


Along with other natural healthcare product companies, Kiwiherb, one of New Zealand’s most respected and experienced providers of 100% natural healthcare products, will have their respiratory products in the spotlight following a law change last month.

In February, most cough medicines in New Zealand were reclassified as prescription only or pharmacist only. These cough medicines are no longer in the public areas of pharmacies and supermarkets, now instead behind the counter.

The regulations have been imposed as a number of cough medicine ingredients either have a history of abuse in New Zealand – such as dextromethorphan – or have the potential to be abused, or accidentally consumed by young children.

Kiwiherb founder, Phil Rasmussen, sees the law change as an opportunity to raise awareness of effective natural alternatives to drug-based cough medicines this autumn and winter. 

“The new restrictions and why they have been introduced should mean that consumers think more carefully about whether they really need a drug-based cough medicine,” says Phil.

“In the past, many families will have grabbed a treatment from the shelf at the first sign of a scratchy throat. However, the law change highlights just how serious some of the ingredients in these medicines are. The Ministry of Health has warned that cough medicines containing ingredients like opium tincture, modified-release paracetamol and the synthetic opiate, dextromethorphan, are highly susceptible to misuse.”

According to Phil, Kiwis suffering from coughs, sniffles and colds could enjoy just as much relief from taking a natural herbal remedy – without the inconvenience of purchasing a drug-based cough medicine.

“An appraisal of traditional usage as well as findings from modern research, suggests that plant-based medicines have enormous potential medicinal value, something clearly recognised by the World Health Organisation in its “WHO traditional medicine strategy: 2014-2023[1],” explains Phil.

“This combined with the fact that herbs were our first medicines, and that upper respiratory tract infections and associated coughs have afflicted humans for centuries, suggests they may have a useful role in improving lung health and helping in the management of conditions associated with a distressing cough.”

Kiwiherb respiratory products, including Certified Organic Kiwiherb Children’s Chest Syrup and Certified Organic Kiwiherb Herbal Chest Syrup can be bought off the shelf. They do not contain any of the ingredients that have been flagged as having the potential to be misused.  

The Kiwiherb Respiratory Range uses a unique combination of high quality organic herbal ingredients in a base of organic Manuka and other native honeys. These naturally effective ingredients work to support clear airways in the chest and the clearing of mucus.

Products can be purchased from an extensive number of stores across the North and South Islands – including Life Pharmacy, Health 2000, Naturally Organic, Unichem, Hardy’s Healthy Living and others. They can also be ordered online via the Kiwiherb website.

Kiwiherb was founded by experienced pharmacist and medical herbalist, Phil Rasmussen almost 20 years ago. The company takes great pride in creating high quality, effective, natural family healthcare products.

For more details on Kiwiherb, visit or follow the brand on Facebook.