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Sustainable supply chains: Engaging China’s private sector in sustainable management of medicinal plants (EGP-MAPs)

 

Final project report in English (PDF, 5MB) and Chinese (PDF, 5MB)

Project policy report in English (PDF, 3 MB)

Honeysuckle Lonicera spp herbarium specimens at Wecome Pharmaceutical Ltd © Anastasiya Timoshyna / TRAFFIC

In 2013, TRAFFIC, together with the World Federation of Chinese Medicine Societies (WFCMS), WWF China and Zhejiang Wecome Pharmaceutical Ltd instigated the EGP-MAPs project in Hunan and Zhejiang Provinces.

The overall goal is to create green supply chains in the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) industry, achieving sustainable management of medicinal plants and improving rural livelihoods and environmental governance.

The Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (MAPs) project is funded by the EU-China Environmental Governance Programme (EGP).

Background
China, the origin and biggest centre of production for many plant materials used in TCM, produces a wide variety of plant-based herbal medicines and ingredients that are consumed both within China and worldwide.
However, wild medicinal plant resources in China are under threat in large part owing to over-harvesting to meet high demand from the TCM and herbal products industry. Poor management is not only threatening wild species but also the livelihoods of collectors and, ultimately, TCM healthcare systems.

The EGP-MAPs project brings together stakeholders involved along the entire supply chain—harvesters, conservation NGOs, industry associations, academia, government departments, and of course the TCM industry and traders to address these issues.

The project uses the FairWild Standard (English version (PDF 1 MB), Chinese version (PDF, 500 KB)) as a best-practice framework for sustainable wild harvesting and equitable trade in plants to underpin a long-term approach towards sustainability in the TCM industry, piloting a participatory approach to governance of China’s wild plant resources.

Wild plant harvesters learn about the Fairwild Standard © Chenyang Li / TRAFFIC

 

Main Activities

Result Area 1: Sustainable production and supply chains led by key TCM manufacturers and traders

  • Support of TCM manufacturers and traders on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy with focus on sustainable production.
  • Support of uptake of voluntary standards and certification schemes, and facilitation of green labelling of products.
  • Establishment of multi-stakeholder fora on private sector leadership for sustainable sourcing and production and creation of links to responsible buyers.


Further information:
TCM sector holds inaugural Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability Forum in China

Sustainable use of wild medicinal plants highlighted at traditional Chinese medicine Congress

FairWild in the limelight at world’s largest organic trade fair

Green growth for the TCM industry in China

Engaging the private sector in sustainable management of medicinal plants in China

Traditional Chinese medicine industry holds CSR & sustainable development forum


Result Area 2: Increased capacity of producer groups

  • Raising collectors’ awareness of the FairWild Standard and conducting training in sustainable harvesting and production.
  • Support of creation and registration of collectors’ associations.
  • Facilitation of access to wider markets by collectors via selected buyers in China or in the EU.


Further information:
Medicinal plant utilization underpins sustainable development in Zhejiang Province, China

EU-funded project in China has lasting impacts for sustainable use of wild plants by Chinese traditional medicine sector

Farmers’ Association created to support green supply chains for TCM ingredients


Result Area 3: Piloting of green cultivation schemes

  • Increasing producer awareness and skills in sustainable cultivation of medicinal plants.
  • Support of the piloting of organic certification for selected producers.
  • Linking farmers to selected manufacturers and traders in China and the EU.


Further information:
TCM industry promotes sustainable sourcing of plant ingredients

 

Result Area 4: Favourable policy environment

  • Raising government awareness and capacity for the support of sustainable management.
  • Facilitation of experience-sharing with private-sector and local government agencies in reviewing existing laws and regulations governing TCM resources.
  • Support of preferential policies towards sustainable business practices.

 

Drying Wolfberry Lycium barbarum​ , Qinghai province, during exchange site visit to learn about sustainable cultivation © Chenyang Li / TRAFFIC

Further information:

Sustainable use of medicinal plant resources in Traditional Chinese Medicine examined

Sustainable use and conservation of wild plants critical to achieving Aichi Biodiversity Targets

Some progress, but still a long way to go: Biodiversity summit in Korea concludes

 

More about the project:
Leaflet about the EGP-MAPs China project (PDF, 1.1 MB) in Chinese (PDF, 1 MB)

Project case-study (PDF, 260 KB)

The project developed case studies to review the implementation of best practices in sustainable approaches to management of wild plant resources, including through the use of standards by industry and the development of better policies and laws.


Case study 1: Implementation of ECBP project in China
Case study 2: Yunnan province sustainable collection of TCM spp
Case study 3: Implementation of FairWild certification scheme Poland
Case study 4: Implementation of FairWild certification scheme Hungary
Case study 5: Implementation of FairWild certification scheme USA
Case study 6: Reviving the traditions of wild plant collection in Central Europe
Case study 7: Pelargonium sidoides policy ZA LE
Case study 8: NTFPs governance Bosnia and Herzegovina
Case study 9: National NWFPs strategy Kosovo
Case study 10: European Policies on wild plants conservation
Case study 11: Implementation of FairWild certification scheme UK

 



Contacts:

Xiaojia Li
Email:
Xiaojia.Li@traffic.org
Website: www.trafficchina.org

Richard Thomas
TRAFFIC
Headquarters Office
Email: richard.thomas@traffic.org
Website: www.traffic.org

 

This communication has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this communication are the sole responsibility of TRAFFIC and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.