Panax Ginseng: How to Fight Wild Ginseng Poaching

Panax Ginseng: How to Fight Wild Ginseng Poaching

Is Your Ginseng Legally Acquired?

When we think of the words “endangered” and “poaching,” we most often think of animals. However, there are many plants that unfortunately also fit this category. American ginseng is on the verge of becoming an endangered species due to illegal poaching. Wild ginseng is valuable, fetching as high as $1,400 per pound on the black market. As the demand and popularity of the prized root continues to grow, the issue of ginseng poaching is getting worse. 

In fact, American ginseng is at risk in twelve of the nineteen states in which it is harvested, and at this rate it may become extinct from the U.S. within the next ten to twenty years!

In addition, because of its popularity and because ginseng takes time to grow and build its medicinal benefits, the amount of good quality American ginseng is at risk for declining.


What about Panax Ginseng?

Many people don’t know that there are different species of ginseng with different uses and health benefits. American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) is wild harvested and grows primarily in the deciduous forests of eastern North America. Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng) grows naturally in similar forests in China, Korea, and Japan. While they are both defined as “tonics”—herbs that increase vitality and strength—Asian ginseng is considered stronger and more heating to the body.


Why is Ginseng So Valuable? 

Ginseng is rich in vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, and Asian Panax ginseng, in particular, is one of the world’s most widely researched and recognized herbs. These cherished roots are used for a wide variety of reasons, including boosting the immune system, enhancing physical endurance, and improving sexual performance. Plus, ginseng has been shown to help the body fight off colds and influenza, as well as help the body adapt to stress.


Bing Han Panax Ginseng for a Sustainable Future 

Bing Han ginseng is grown in a sustainable and natural manner with full traceability, and without the use of pesticides. They use their own farms to grow high quality Panax ginseng that doesn’t negatively impact our environment and the future of important herbal medicines. 

In order to pack the most trace minerals and nutrition in their ginseng, they relocate their plants to a new plot of land every two years. Used land stays uncultivated for fifteen years to allow the soil to regenerate before being replanted with more Panax ginseng. What's more, their ginseng grows for six years to allow the roots to have time to develop and concentrate its many active medicinal ingredients.

When choosing your natural health supplements, make sure that the product you choose is not negatively influencing the future health of others and our environment.
“When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir


Dr. Melissa Carr is a registered Dr. of Traditional Chinese Medicine, caring for patients in an integrative medicine clinic in Vancouver.  Dr. Melissa Carr is a registered Dr. of Traditional Chinese Medicine, caring for patients in an integrative medicine clinic in Vancouver.