GNC and Vitamin Shoppe: Controversy of Bodybuilding drugs

As we all know, GNC (General Nutrition Center) and Vitamin Shoppe are two of the largest over the counter supplemental manufacturers and carriers; but some of us may not know that they are being targeted by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) since they began carrying something called DMAA (DMAA is found in Geranium oil, which is found in flowers). (Lahart) The bodybuilding world is always looking for new and improved products to create high adrenaline, intensity, and energy. Most people that come to GNC are searching for something to either get them bigger with muscle mass or smaller to look more chiseled and defined. The DMAA ingredient can do both of those, its that type of uniqueness that will separate it from other drugs by spiking up the energy and adrenaline through the roof whilst narrowing your blood vessels and increasing the blood flow to the muscles. And it has helped GNC and Vitamin Shoppes stocks skyrocket.

The issue comes in the fact of natural occurrence. GNC and Vitamin Shoppe are claiming that DMAA  (1,3-Dimethylamylamine- also meaning Geranamine) is a naturally occurring substance that is found in a Geranium oil in a flower base. (Lahart) The FDA is cracking down on GNC and Vitamin Shoppe for carrying the suppliers (such as USPlabs, Muscletech, Cellucor, and etc.) that have no evidence that it is a safe product and that it is actually found in flowers. (Lahart) USPlabs went out of there way to create a website saying that DMAA is safe and naturally made (the website can be found at I know that it might not sound like a big deal, but you need to understand that if a dietary supplemental is not found to be created naturally, the FDA can say that it needs their approval since it is a ‘pre-market product’ and not a dietary ingredient. Once that takes place they can take over that product and recall it from all shelves in the nation since it is a ‘pre-market product.’

The FDA did research in four different labs (3- domestic and 1-international) and found no traces of DMAA in multiple samples of Geranium oil. (Lahart) A lot of the suppliers that GNC and Vitamin Shoppe are carrying have rebelled against the FDA by providing their own research taken from their labs.  But for now, the FDA is just frowning on the product (which I have to say to most of my customers at GNC if there hesitant on getting one of the awesome products that carry DMAA).  Unfortunately, I feel that most products that still carry DMAA at GNC or Vitamin Shoppe (Especially at my GNC store) are in the decline period of of the product life cycle. I don’t believe that it’s in its decline because it can’t offer the organization anything anymore, but the FDA is pressing down so hard on any DMAA products that it’s getting harder to carry them with all the rules and regulations.(Operation’s Management textbook, CH. 5 Figure 2.5) (PPT Ch.5 Slide 11)

Do you think the FDA is doing right by pressing down on an active ingredient just because they suppliers cant claim that it is naturally made? Would you take a product that wasn’t naturally made? Even if it is not naturally made, do you think it should still be on the market and not taken off like ephedrine and steroids were? Do you agree with the fact that it should be kept on the market and that it should be left up to the people to take it or not? Is GNC, Vitamin Shoppe and the FDA being ethical and moral about this issue?

Boeing’s Experiments: Death of a Bully or Resurrection of a World Leader?

Click Here for the Pasztor article!

Click Here for the Fingas article!

As we all know, Boeing is the largest and strongest airline manufacturer in the world and their growth has never stopped. They are the leader in commercial airplanes and a top competitor in national defense. One of the reason’s that Boeing has been so successful is because of the fact that they are a global enterprise. We learned in class, when we were studying through chapter two, that Boeing falls under global strategies by making their sales and productions worldwide (PPT Chapter 2 Slide 2). Boeing has been trying to create a new technology (“Honeydew”- cited to Pasztor) called “Honeydew” to reduce 2% of annual fuel consumption. So obviously Boeing has been trying to implement being cost efficient (reduce costs) with these new technologies. All of their new technologies revolve around reducing fuel consumption or making the flight shorter (Pasztor-2). Boeing want’s to create a very environmentally friendly, cockpit friendly (most commercial aircraft crashes are due to the mis-understanding or confusion by the pilot’s), and fuel efficient planes (Pasztor-3)

Boeing is also starting to provide much better end-products by being attentive to the consumer needs. Boeing has excelled in providing a luxurious setting for all of its customer. It is reported that the Boeing 777,787, and 747-8 will have in flight cell phone use, wi-fi capability and cleaner air (Fingas- 1)! They are also installing television sets (on certain planes you will have a joy stick where you can play a video game console) to each seat, weather your in the economy class or first class (Fingas-2) They are implementing a new technology where the era of addictive connectivity can get its satisfaction in a flight, any time and any where. Boeing has placed it’s consumers on the number one standpoint by exceeding the quality of any other airplane manufacturer (PPT Chapter 2 Slide 24).

With Boeing implementing all these new technologies, not only to help themselves be cost efficient and reduce cost, but to also help the customers have a safer and more enjoyable flight, they will remain to be at the top of the food chain for aircraft manufacturers. They have went above and beyond with their calling by reducing annual fuel consumption, implementing better resources (made from composite materials) and creating an aroma that no airplane has had in the past!

What Boeing flights have you been on it the past? Have you noticed the customer appreciation sky rocket throughout the recession? Do you consider this a luxury or a necessity?