Here are some of the highlights of the measures we take to ensure our products do not contain banned substances:
- HIGH5 products are not formulated with ingredients from the list of WADA named banned substances
- HIGH5 suppliers are selected based on supplier audit questionnaires which assess the use of banned substances throughout the supply chain
- We have good process control methods in place across our manufacturing lines to minimise the risk of inadvertent doping
- Specific products are batch tested for banned substances by LGC, a world class lab. These can be purchased in our online shop.
- We have a 100% proven track record of no positive tests. No athlete has ever tested positive from using a HIGH5 product and no HIGH5 finished products have ever failed a banned substance test.
Below you can find more information on our commitment to drug free products and what this means.
What is the risk of supplement contamination?
There is a concern for consumers that dietary supplements found within the sports nutrition industry may be contaminated with banned substances. The sports nutrition industry is very broad; ranging from endurance companies like HIGH5 who use basic food ingredients to enhance an individual’s performance, to supplement based companies supplying an array of more unique products. Unfortunately, we are all grouped under the same heading, yet there is a misunderstanding of the risks of inadvertent doping for these products. There are also very different rules and practices in many countries for manufacturing and labelling of supplements.
However, there are some cases where supplements have been contaminated. In light of this, we take this very seriously and we have a 100% proven track record of no positive tests. No athlete has ever tested positive from using a HIGH5 product and no HIGH5 finished products have ever failed a banned substance test. The latest evidence suggests that banned substance contamination in supplements is very low too. In a recent study¹, 565 food supplements from 17 countries were tested for the presence of anabolic steroids. Of these, only 0.7% tested positive for the presence of 43 different steroids.
It’s important that you are well informed about the quality controls and testing that sports nutrition brands have in place.
The WADA, their Code and the Prohibited List
WADA’s mission is “to lead a collaborative worldwide movement for doping-free sport”. WADA was established in 1999 as an international independent agency composed and funded equally by the sport movement and governments of the world. Its key activities include scientific research, education, development of anti-doping capacities, and monitoring of the World Anti Doping Code (also known as the Code).
The Code harmonises anti-doping policies, rules and regulations within sport organisations and among public authorities around the world. Its main purpose is to protect the clean athlete. The World Anti-Doping Program is based on this fundamental and universal document. All athletes should be aware of the Code.
What does HIGH5 do to minimise the risk?
Below we take a look into some of the different methods HIGH5 implement to minimise the risk of cross-contamination of banned substances throughout our supply chain.
HIGH5 products are not formulated with ingredients from the list of WADA named banned substances
We do not use Dimethylamylamine (DMAA) as an ingredient in HIGH5 products.
We always take great care when choosing our suppliers and make an informed decision before using a new ingredient or supplier. We will not introduce any new ingredient that is on the WADA banned substance list. HIGH5 suppliers are selected based on supplier audit questionnaires which specifically assess the use of banned substances throughout the supply chain. We will not use any suppliers that we suspect has banned substances at any stage in their process.
HIGH5 production sites follow good manufacturing practises to minimise the risk of cross contamination of WADA banned substances. A variety of strong process controls are in place to ensure this is the case. These include goods in inspections, thorough cleaning regimes, house keeping and hygiene protocols, and excellent traceability systems.
We keep samples of all our products throughout their shelf life and can test batches if there are any suspicions of contamination by a banned substance.
The main manufacturing site for HIGH5 products, where we make our gels and powder sachets, has been Informed Sport Certified. This certification provides in-depth analysis into critical control processes. Through regular on-site inspections and manufacturing facility swabbing, Informed-Sport site registration helps HIGH5 identify and resolve areas of risk within the manufacturing process. Some of our suppliers also have this accreditation. For any products made on our behalf and aren’t made on an Informed Sports accredited site, we have procedures in place to minimise the risk. However, we are working towards a full site accreditation with these suppliers. This site registration is further complemented by specific batch testing of finished products.
Batch Tested Product
Whilst products are not formulated with ingredients from the WADA list of banned substances, in addition to a variety of other process controls, we understand that some athletes would still prefer to use products that have been specifically tested for WADA banned substances. We offer a selection of tested products via our online shop. A certificate from LGC labs is provided with these products. Simply choose “batch tested” from the flavour selection on the individual product page. If you require additional products or you live outside the UK then please contact us. You can find out more information about the testing standards from LGC below. Besides the specific batch tested products, we also do random spot tests on the whole range as part of our product testing regime.
We have been using the world-renowned sports doping control and research lab LGC (previously known as HFL) for our banned substance testing, which also runs the Informed-Sport and Informed-Choice supplement testing programmes. Supported by UK Sport, LGC offers a supplement testing service accredited to the ISO 17025 standard. This is an internationally recognised standard for analytical labs and ensures the accredited methods have been shown to be robust, capable of working to the required detection limits every time, and thus ensuring the integrity and consistency of the analytical results. ISO 17025 is the industry standard for an analytical laboratory.
Testing by a trusted lab is important to reassure us and you that HIGH5 products are free from relevant contamination of prohibited substances. Besides the ISO 17025 standard LGC also have experience of testing within the framework of WADA. Their testing capability for supplements includes the analysis for over 146 substances that are considered prohibited in sport and substances that pose a threat in respect of product contamination. These substances include anabolic agents, stimulants, beta-2-agonists, recreational drugs and masking agents. Their highly sensitive tests can detect contamination down to 10ng/g for steroids and 100ng/g for stimulants. That’s like testing for a rain drop in an Olympic sized swimming pool. The LGC test is able to analyse all our products for relevant prohibited substances.
Why don’t HIGH5 rely on testing alone?
Whilst we, like any other supplier, can’t guarantee products are free from cross-contamination, we take this very seriously and have implemented a quality assurance and testing programme to minimise the risk of cross-contamination of any of our products with banned substances. However, testing a product for banned substances does not mean that the product is guaranteed drugs free. No manufacturer or quality assurance program can make this claim. Let’s look into this a bit further:
The WADA Prohibited List is not definitive. The list stipulates classes of prohibited substances, such as anabolic agents and related substances and prohibited methods only, rather than publishing a full list of substances. When analysing a supplement product for contaminants the Prohibited List is unable to act as a checklist for all prohibited substances against which products should be screened. Testing supplements cannot guard against contamination using untried, untested and unknown drugs or substances. However, LGC’s vast understanding of product testing and previous experience as a WADA accredited lab testing for banned substances means they are able to identify a list of substances for testing that maintain integrity for the tests.
Testing should be seen as an additional quality control measure rather than a guarantee of drug free products. Instead we minimise the risk of contamination at the source and implement a rigorous and strict manufacturing protocol. Over 20 years of manufacturing advanced sports nutrition products means HIGH5 have the experience and knowledge in place to produce safe quality products for all athletes.
100% Track Record
No athlete has ever tested positive from using a HIGH5 product and no HIGH5 finished products have ever failed a banned substance test. We have been supplying sports nutrition products to elite and professional athletes for over 20 years without an athlete testing positive from contaminated products. As a result, these methods give us the confidence to supply HIGH5 products to athletes of all levels, including World and Olympic Champions.
Want to learn more?
WADA places high importance on athlete education to prevent the intentional or unintentional use by athletes of Prohibited Substances and Prohibited Methods. We also feel this is very important and are happy to provide athletes the tools to make an informed decision before purchasing sports nutrition products. We hope the information we are providing is useful to make this decision but if you have any further questions then please get in touch with us.
Hopefully we have answered all your questions and you can use HIGH5 products in confidence. If you are still unsure then please get in touch with us.