September 11, 2008
Illegal Trade affects Medicinal and Aromatic Plants in Nepal
A headline article in the Telegraphnepal discusses the status of several medicinal and aromatic plants in Nepal and concludes that they are endangered because of illegal trade supported by "rampant illiteracy" prevailing in the local villages.
The article focuses on the mushroom Cordyceps sinensis, Fritillaria cirrhosa, (both important in traditional Chinese Medicine); Larix himalaica, (used for construction) and mentions Seabuckthorn (used in cosmetics) as well as essential oils.
The author of the article, Khilendra Gurung, is a Nepalese botanist and researcher in the non-Timber forest products of Nepal, especially including aromatic plants, with a number of published papers on the essential oils of Nepal. Eight of his papers are posted online on Scribd, an article site. They include a 44 page inventory of non timber forest Products (NTFPs) in the Manaslu Conservation Area, an an analysis of wintergreen oils, two papers on Sea Buckthorn, an MS-GC of Rhododendron oil, a specification for Lindera neesiana, and an overview of the the essential oil bearing plants of Nepal.