New Directors Named to AHPA Educational Foundation Board

(May 30, 2007) — A new chair and two new directors have been named to the AHPA Foundation for Education & Research on Botanicals (AHPA ERB Foundation). Monzur Ahmed, senior director of regulatory affairs for Neways International, will serve as the chair. James Fischer, Esq., of the law firm Drinker, Biddle & Reath, and Lyle E. Craker, PhD, professor in the Department of Plant, Soil & Insect Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, were also appointed to the foundation board.

“I’m excited to have this opportunity to further the AHPA Foundation’s important initiatives,” said Ahmed, who also serves as the vice-chair of the AHPA Board of Trustees. “This foundation provides a place where companies and individuals in the herbal industry can work together to promote education and research on health-promoting herbs.”

Ahmed, Fischer and Craker will join seven current Foundation directors:

- Mitch Coven (Vitality Works)

- Ed Croom, PhD (Indena USA, Inc.)

- William Keller, PhD (Nature’s Sunshine Products)

- James Kinsinger (Hain Celestial Group)

- Beth Lambert (Herbalist & Alchemist)

- Michael McGuffin (American Herbal Products Association)

- James Simon, PhD (Rutgers University)

The AHPA ERB Foundation is the nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational arm of the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA). Its purpose is to promote education and research on medicinal, therapeutic, and health-promoting herbs. The AHPA Board appoints the Foundation Board directors.

The Foundation has served as the co-publisher of a book on conservation of Chinese medicinal plant and animal species titled Mending the Web of Life: Chinese Medicine and Species Conservation (available for sale online at: current primary project of the Foundation is further fund-raising for revising AHPA’s Botanical Safety Handbook, a reference book on herbal safety, first published in 1997.

“We have been quite successful in securing the necessary funds to initiate the Botanical Safety Handbook update,” said Mitch Coven, AHPA ERB Foundation treasurer. “But we need additional support to complete this essential reference text for healthcare providers, consumers, retailers and manufacturers of herbal products in a timely manner.”

The revision project is scheduled to be completed over a three-year period, and seed money has been pledged from the Office of Dietary Supplements at the National Institutes of Health, the University of Massachusetts, and several companies and private individuals.

For more information about the Foundation or to discuss supporting its efforts with a tax-deductible donation, please contact Michael McGuffin ([email protected]).


The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) is the only national trade association devoted to herbal issues. Representing the core of the botanical trade -- comprised of the finest growers, processors, manufacturers and marketers of herbal products -- our mission is to promote the responsible commerce of herbal products. AHPA committees generate self-regulations to ensure the highest level of quality with respect to the way herbal products are manufactured, labeled, and sold. Website:

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