Acupuncture Needles Now Regulated as Medical Devices in California

Recently and unexpectedly, the California Board of Pharmacy has imposed a licensing regulation on the sales of acupuncture needles in California. Unbeknownst to all wholesalers and distributors statewide, including us at Nuherbs, the news that every company must acquire a license from the California Board of Pharmacy in order to conduct our business came as a shock. As you may have observed, all companies in California have had to stop selling acupuncture needles.

We at Nuherbs are diligently working on a solution to providing acupuncture needles to our customers. There are several bureaucratic hoops to jump through in order to obtain a drug wholesale license with the California Pharmacy Board. The application process may take minimally six months. Currently without this license, we must cease all sales of acupuncture needles.

We sincerely apologize for our inability to supply your practice with acupuncture needles and any inconveniences that this may have caused.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to e-mail Wilson Lau at



Acupuncture Needles Now Regulated as Medical Devices in California

By NuHerbs Staff

If you are a Licensed acupuncturist, or a student attending an acupuncture college, you are highly aware of the many hours of training required to practice acupuncture on the body safely. During formal training, incredible detail is given to precise needle depths of penetration over vulnerable anatomical structures such as veins, arteries and organs. Before graduating and again before being granted state licensure, students must demonstrate an extensive knowledge of anatomy and the ability to adapt needling depth to various locations on the body in order to avoid causing harm, injury, or even death by inappropriate puncturing. In each country in which acupuncture is practiced, there are laws requiring training and licensure in order to practice acupuncture, protecting the general public from harm. As the knowledge and practice of acupuncture spreads here in the West, new laws must be put in place in order to restrict the practice of acupuncture to those who have completed the necessary training.

As an extension of these preventative safety measures, recently new laws have been put into effect in California which regulate the sale of acupuncture needles as medical devices. This is important legislation which restricts the sale of acupuncture needles to licensed acupuncturists and approved medical providers only. Any retailer who wishes to sell acupuncture needles must be registered as a licensed retailer of medical devices in California.

When this law went into effect, we at Nuherbs considered our option to apply for the appropriate licenses to sell medical devices, in order to provide acupuncture needles to our customers. We decided to focus on the sale of Chinese Medicinal herbs only, as this is the true focus of our business. For that reason, Nuherbs has decided not to carry acupuncture needles for sale.

If you have any questions about the sale of acupuncture needles or this new legislation, please do not hesitate to email us at