Question of the Week
What can you tell me about regulations pertaining to ginseng and the cost of production of medicinal herbs?
Thank you for requesting information from ATTRA on regulations pertaining to ginseng in your state and on cost of production for medicinal herbs. I can point to some production budgets for ginseng and provide a few links for other herbs.
Ginseng harvesting/growing is governed by both state and federal regulations. For information on the latest state regulations, please contact the following agency.
Dept. of Agriculture & Consumer Services
Division of Product & Industry Regulation
Office of Plant Protection
P.O. Box 1163
Richmond, VA 23209
Phone - 804-786-3515
The federal Fish and Wildlife Service in 2006 banned export of ginseng roots under 5 years old (as determined by stem nodes). For more information and many useful links, please go to the Web site www.growginseng.org.
Virginia State University Cooperative Extension has published budgets for three main types of ginseng culture: shadecloth, woods-grown, and wild-simulated. See
Producing and Marketing Wild Simulated Ginseng in Forest and Agroforestry Systems 
By Andy Hankins, Extension Specialist, Alternative Agriculture; Virginia State University
For an up-to-the-minute assessment of costs, contact Mr. Hankins, who is one of the foremost ginseng experts in the U.S.
Phone: (804) 524-5962
Fax: (804) 524-5714
Sample crop budgets for other medicinals have been published by the Canadian government (in Canadian dollars). For the herb links, see our publication Enterprise Budgets and Production Costs for Organic Agriculture.
Also see the 2004 ATTRA publication Ginseng, Goldenseal, and Other Native Roots. In 2006 the comprehensive Growing & Marketing Ginseng, Goldenseal & Other Woodland Medicinals, by W. Scott Persons and Dr. Jeanine M. Davis, of North Carolina’s Mountain Horticultural Crops Research and Extension Center, was published by Bright Mountain Books, Fairview, NC.
Herb Production in Organic Systems
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