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Tax issues.

The British Pharmaceutical Codex as a well-known book of reference.

The following extracts are copied from a letter, dated November 23, 1907, addressed to the Secretary of the Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, by Mr. E. E. Stoodley, Secretary to the Board of Inland Revenue:

"I am directed by the Board of Inland Revenue to acquaint you that they have consented to recognise the 'British Pharmaceutical Codex' as a well-known book of reference in connection with the exemption from Medicine Stamp Duty in favour of 'known, admitted and approved' remedies. The letters "B.P.C." printed on the label and enclosure of a preparation made according to a formula in the Codex will be accepted as an indication of the source from which the formula is taken.

"Medicines described in the 'British Pharmaceutical Codex' by names in the possessive case cannot be regarded as free from liability to duty by reason of their publication in the Codex, even if it be claimed that they are of a non-proprietary character. With regard to preparations of this nature in which an ostensible claim to a proprietary right is set up, the Board, before sanctioning their sale unstamped, require that the ostensible claim should be rebutted not merely by disclosure of the formula in a well-known book of reference, but also by the production to them of evidence that the article is in fact a well-known medicine the composition of which is familiar to chemists in general, and that the name included in the description never has carried with it any claim either to exclusive right of sale of the article or to exclusive knowledge in connection with its preparation.

"The only articles as to which the Board have as yet been satisfied on these points are Blaud's Pills, Gregory's Powder, Liver Pills (Sir Andrew Clark), Hamilton's Pills, Christison's Pills, and Dobell's Aperient."

The foregoing list of names has since been augmented by the addition of the following: Easton's Syrup, Parrish's Syrup or Chemical Food, Pagenstecher's Ointment and Eye-ointment, Rhinitis Tablets (Lincoln), and Stokes's Mixtures and Liniments. In the case of names such as Friar's Balsam, James's Fever Powder, Nisbet's Specific, St. John Long's Liniment, and Ward's Paste, it should be noted that they cannot be used without incurring liability to Medicine Stamp Duty.


The British Pharmaceutical Codex, 1911, was published by direction of the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain.



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