Capsules: Hydrastis canadensis

Newsbreaks in herb research: Trade controls on goldenseal.


| November/December 1997


Trade controls imposed for goldenseal 

U.S. government officials are monitoring goldenseal, one of this country’s top-selling herbal remedies, to help protect the plant. The trade controls are the result of goldenseal’s recent listing on an international treaty known as CITES, or the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species. The treaty requires that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service monitor and limit goldenseal trade, and the effort began in September.

While some welcomed the news, ­others wondered whether the listing could effectively protect goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis), whose roots have been used for centuries to treat mucous membrane infections.

Steven Foster, an Herbs for Health ­Editorial Advisory Board member and a reviewer of the CITES treaty, said he was skeptical about whether the listing would be effective except to raise ­awareness about the pressure that consumption puts on wild plants. The CITES listing means that only unprocessed goldenseal, including roots, rhizomes, rootstocks, and bulk powder, will be monitored, but finished or processed forms of it won’t be. Moreover, Foster said, the treaty is international in scope, but most goldenseal isn’t exported. Goldenseal, which grows only in the United States and a small area in Can­ada, is primarily consumed domestically.

The CITES listing for goldenseal was prompted by TRAFFIC USA, the trade monitoring arm of the World Wildlife Fund and the World Conservation Union, according to Christopher Robbins of TRAFFIC USA. The group has found that wild goldenseal populations may be declining because of myths about what the herb can do, Robbins said.



“It got a reputation as helpful to mask urine testing,” Robbins said. “It is not in fact effective for this,” but by some estimates, about half of the goldenseal population is being used by those who fear detection in urine screening for drug use, he said.

Goldenseal needs three to five years of growth before it’s ready for harvesting, so it takes at least that long to replenish supplies, a lag time that further increases the pressure on wild populations, Robbins said.






mother earth news fair 2018 schedule

MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR

Next: August 4-5, 2018
Albany, OR

Sit in on dozens of practical workshops from the leading authorities on natural health, organic gardening, real food and more!

LEARN MORE







Subscribe today and save 58%

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living !

Mother Earth LivingWelcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $19.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $24.95.




Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds


Copyright 2018, All Rights Reserved
Ogden Publications, Inc., 1503 SW 42nd St., Topeka, Kansas 66609-1265