Ayurveda getting out of balance: 93 percent of medicinal plants threatened with extinction

Traditional Ayurvedic medicine could face an uncertain future as 93 percent of the wild plants used in the practice are threatened with extinction due to over exploitation to meet the demand of herbal industries. The Botanical Survey of India recently prioritized 359 wild medicinal plant species and conducted an assessment throughout the country to determine their health. The news wasn’t good. Of the 359 species, 335 were categorized as critically endangered, vulnerable or near-threatened.

The survey used criteria and categories established by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) for its Red List of Threatened Species. According to India’s Ministry of Environment and Forests, 95 percent of plants used in Ayurvedic medicine are collected from the wild, and about two-thirds of that harvest uses “destructive means” that can damage or kill the plants.

To help keep these plant species from going extinct, the Indian government in 2008 initiated a program to relocate species from the wild, study how to domesticate them, and promote sustainable harvest protocols. This survey is the latest step in that program.

Our efforts are being made to relocate endangered herbs from India, Nepal and Tibet to a similar habitat in the foothills of Caucasian Mountains. AHPP has acquired 670 acres of land in the Republic of Georgia. This geographic location is similar in climate, altitude and minerals in the soil as the foothills of Himalayan Mountains and ideal for growing the endangered herbs

Ayumantra is donating $ 1.00 from the sale of each bottle to the Ayurvedic Herbs Protection Program

AHPP is the joint effort of Ayumantra & EISRA (European Institute of scientific Research on Ayurveda)