Poll Looks at Pseudoephedrine Debate

JULY 01, 2005

A consumer survey, commissioned by the National Consumers League and the Food Marketing Institute, explored putting OTC products with pseudoephedrine behind the counter. Although consumers said that they are willing to tolerate restrictions on buying pseudoephedrine products, many do not want OTC products with that ingredient to be available only at pharmacies.

The survey indicated that 62% of the respondents believed that keeping pseudoephedrine products in locked display cases was "somewhat reasonable" or "very reasonable." Yet, 44% said that restricting sales of the cold medicine ingredient to pharmacies would create a burden. Of the total respondents, 71% supported putting such cough, cold, and allergy products behind "a counter, not a pharmacy counter." Restricting the quantity of such products that individuals can purchase was favored by 84%, and putting an age limit on the buyers was supported by 74%.