India now ranks the world’s second largest exporter of medicinal plants after China as the trade in herbals registered around 20% growth in last finacial year, according to reports.
Worldover China commands the supreme position in export trade in medicinal herbs.China has about 28 per cent share in the global medicinal plants market. While India’s share i stood at 8.13 per cent.
However, India, with its immense reserve of diverse plants, is fast catching up nearly doubling the volume of exported herbs in the last five years.
In terms of numbers, India’s share in the export of medicinal plants and herbs in the global market during the current financial year is Rs 685.14 crore.
India exported medicinal plants worth Rs 594.77 crore during the year of 2008-09. The figure was a little over 19% compared to that of the previous year, data suggest.
The exports of herbs during the year of 2007-08 registered Rs 470.73 crore against Rs 377.02 crore during 2006-07. The same was Rs 307.02 crore during 2005-06 and Rs 293.63 crore during 2004-05, as per the provisional data available.
The government of India has initiated several schemes to maintain the growth of herbal exports through the Department of AYUSH.
AYUSH department is currently in the process of charting out strategies to increase exports of pharmaceutical products encouraging the cultivation and promotion of herbals across India.
Similarly, the National Medicinal Plants Board (NMPB) has come up a new centrally sponsored scheme of national mission on medicinal Plants earmarking a total outlay of Rs 630 crore during the 11th Plan.
NMPB scheme will support cultivation of medicinal plants according to their market demand.
India is home for a rich collection of herbal plants. Medicinal plants, herbs, spices and herbal remedies are known to Ayurveda in India since long times.
Herbal remedies are used in many forms. Infusions are steeping herbs or spices, with parts like leaves and flowers with boiling water for some time. Filtered or unfiltered use this water extracts of spices as herbal remedies.
Decoction is boiling roots, bark and hard parts of herbs and spices with water for along time. Infusion and decoction both are known as herbal teas. Some times essential oil of herbs and spices are also used as herbal remedies.