Homeopathy was a vaguely illogical belief 200 years ago that if you mimicked the symptoms of a disease you could prevent or cure the disease. It's like sitting in a chair pushing an imaginary gas pedal and believing that will get you to Safeway yet it sells to the 'I don't trust medicine but with magic water my flu only lasted for 7.8 days instead of 8' crowd.

I imagine Hahnemann would not believe in something so goofy today ("Why are you still listening to us? We wrote with feathers!") but there is a whole market of kooky customers who believe the Ways Of The Ancients must be superior - even if they make no scientific sense at all.

Some homeopathic customers do insist their products work, and when it isn't a placebo it's because their homeopathic product contains actual drugs. The FDA has issued another warning about homeopathy that actually does something - because that means the magic potion has been sneakily laced with science, and since that is not on the label, it is both illegal and dangerous.

Link: http://dilbert.com/strips/comic/2010-04-16/

The market has grown and we can blame activists, both inside academia, inside government groups like National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health and National Institute of Environmental Health Science, and at environmental groups for that. When one field of science - medicine, food, energy - is painted as a corporate conspiracy, then someone else will claim they all are. That is why the U.S. Food And Drug Administration is actually withdrawing the Compliance Policy Guide (CPG) 400.400 - “Conditions Under Which Homeopathic Drugs May be Marketed.

In the last 20 years, companies have found ways to easily get around it. FDA is instead moving to a risk-based approach to regulatory and enforcement action, which gives them a lot more flexibility to crack down on frauds who are putting actual medical products into their magic water.

Just this year they have cracked down on 10 companies engaged in fraud - and for a homeopathy company that is really something. Their most recent enforcement was against companies putting the eyes of homeopathy customers in danger by selling tainted eye drops. Even water is not safe when these people sell it.