Whenever a business has to adhere to red tape, the owner more often than not does so begrudgingly and ends up frustrated. However, one business owner sees regulation as a good thing.
No one likes to be forced to jump through hoops, and some pieces of regulation and red tape make business owners do just that.
However, serial entrepreneur Mat Collett believes regulation ultimately benefits his current business, Solar D Sunscreen.
Mat’s current product is a sunscreen that allows UVB light to hit a person’s skin, and as a result, create vitamin D. However, due to current regulation, he cannot say that his sunscreen creates vitamin D.
“We're governed by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). We've got to prove every claim we make,” Mat says.
“We're governed by the TGA because we're a sunscreen; anything with SPF is governed by the TGA. If we were just a skincare cream, we could make all sorts of claims that we're not allowed to make as a sunscreen.
“What we're not allowed to say as a sunscreen, we're not allowed to say you will produce vitamin D using our product. What we can say is, using our product, we let in the sunlight that allows your body to produce vitamin D.”
While Mat admits this is a minor difference, he cannot say his product creates vitamin D as that falls under a therapeutic claim, which the TGA does not allow.
“There are hoops, and there are hurdles we've got to get through and make sure that we're running by the books,” he says.
On top of this, Mat warns the TGA regulation process is long and costly, and may be the strictest regulatory body in the world. Despite this, it is a necessity to go through this regulatory body, otherwise his product will not be able to be sold in stores.
“We're can't cut corners. We're not allowed to. Even if we wanted to, we just couldn't because the regulators would be down on you like a tonne of bricks,” says Mat.
However, Mat does not begrudge this regulation, as it ends up being a major selling point when it comes to exporting.
“On the flip side, when you're exporting, especially in Asia, they really respect anything that's made in Australia because of the stringent TGA,” he says.
“They know that what they're buying is the best because you've got to go through the hoops.
“In the long run, it's good for us.”
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