(Friday, December 8, 2006) — With a common purpose of providing guidance to growers and collectors of herbs that are used in consumer products, the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) and the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia (AHP) have completed a draft document titled Good Agricultural and Collection Practice for Herbal Raw Materials (GACP).
The goals of the draft AHPA-AHP GACP are to ensure that herbal raw materials are accurately identified and are not adulterated with contaminants that may present a public health risk, are in full conformity with all of the quality characteristics for which they are represented, and are harvested and cultivated in a manner that is environmentally sustainable. The GACP has relevance to herbal raw materials in all herbal products, including foods, dietary supplements, drugs, cosmetics, etc. It is intended to have applications to all herbal raw material producers, both large and small and whether producing herbs by cultivation of by harvesting from the wild.
The draft AHPA-AHP GACP can be found online at http://www.ahpa.org/portals/0/pdfs/06_1208_AHPA-AHP_GACP.pdf and http://www.herbal-ahp.org/06_1208_AHPA-AHP_GACP.pdf.
It is presented as a draft for discussion and review, so comments are welcome, especially by farmers and collectors who use the draft in their facilities and operations. Revisions may be made to this GACP as additional insights are gained through this review process. If your company is in the business of growing or collecting herbal raw materials, you are invited to review this draft and submit comments and ideas about its application in your operations to the AHPA email or physical address on the cover of the document.
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The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) is a trade association representing the core of the botanical trade — comprised of the finest growers, processors, manufacturers and marketers of herbal products. AHPA’s 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 herbs are manufactured, labeled, and sold. Website: www.ahpa.org.
The American Herbal Pharmacopoeia (AHP) produces critically reviewed documents called monographs that outline the quality control criteria needed for ensuring the identity, purity, and quality of botanical raw materials. Each document also presents a complete and critical review of the traditional and scientific literature regarding the efficacy and safety of herbal medicines. Website: http://www.herbal-ahp.org/