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U.S. FWS Posts Communication on CITES Rules for Hoodia

(Silver Spring, MD, April 7, 2006) -- The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) Division on Management Authority has posted a communication dated March 29, 2006, on its website to inform importers, exporters and re-exporters of Hoodia species and products containing these species of their obligations under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). FWS simultaneously delivered this communication to AHPA to request that it be posted on the AHPA website to make sure that the herbal business community is properly informed on this matter.

All species of Hoodia were listed on CITES Appendix II effective January 12, 2005, and specimens, parts and products of Hoodia in international trade are therefore subject to certain regulations. The 2005 Hoodia listing included a unique annotation, such that an exclusion was established for materials “obtained through controlled harvesting and production in collaboration with” the CITES authorities within the range states of Botswana, Namibia, and South Africa. These three countries, however, have recently informed the CITES Secretariat that they have not yet reached an agreement as to how collaborations envisioned by the annotation would be applied.

The primary content in FWS’ March 29 correspondence is simply a reiteration of the rules that govern any international trade in species that are listed on CITES Appendix II. Additionally however, FWS has stated that the exemption referenced in the annotation to the listing does not currently apply, so that all international shipments of Hoodia must be accompanied by required CITES documents.

FWS’ March 29 communication to importers, exporters, and re-exporters of Hoodia is posted on the AHPA website at For further information, please contact Michael McGuffin (


The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) is the only national trade association devoted solely to herbal issues. 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:

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