DEC 2018  

Medicinal plants have been a major source of cure of human diseases since time immemorial. The Himalayan state of Himachal Pradesh is a natural habitat for a large variety of medicinal and aromatic herbs and is a vast repository of plant ecosystem. The state is a storehouse of biological wealth and there is a vast potential for cultivation of medicinal herbs in the state.

This month, our cover story titled, 'Herbal Wealth in Himachal Pradesh: Challenges in Preserving and Promoting it for the Wellness Sector' discusses the opportunities and challenges in effectively utilizing the herbal wealth of Himachal Pradesh. According to a study brought out by a team of experts of the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE) in 2017, the total commercial demand for herbal raw drugs in the country for the year 2014/15, was estimated at 512,000 MT worth over Rs.7,000 crore. The study shows that the demand is expected to go up to 650,000 MT by the year 2020. However, increasing demand of herbal material has resulted in unrelenting and unregulated extraction of these medicinal herbs from the forests over the years. This has put many species of medicinal plants on the red list (the IUCN red list of threatened species). At least 60 medicinal plant species from Himachal Pradesh are also on the red list, of which 12 have been identified as 'critically endangered'.

Therefore, the need of the hour is to evolve practical guidelines for the sustainable utilization of threatened species and parameters affecting medicinal plant utilization. The policy and strategic plans should go a long way in harnessing the medicinal wealth of the state for the welfare of mankind as a whole. The ICFRE study also suggests that promoting cultivation of medicinal plants requires handholding by some local agency over long periods. The farmers need technical inputs in the form of advice about choice of species, initial germplasm, tending of crops, post-harvest handling, and marketing. With the right kind of training , guidance, and initial handholding as suggested in the study, the cultivators can take advantage of the boom in herbal industry and thus contribute to the health and wellness of the masses, while also increasing their incomes. Therefore, more consistent efforts are required in the cultivation of medicinal plants in Himachal Pradesh as well as the rest of the country as the sector has not attained the size and scale that it has the potential to achieve.

© TERI 2019

Nominations open for CSP Today India awards 2013

The inaugural CSP Today India awards ceremony takes place on March 12, and CSP developers, EPCs, suppliers and technology providers can now be nominated.

CSP has made tremendous progress since the announcement of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission in 2010. With Phase I projects now drawing closer to completion, the first milestone in India’s CSP learning curve is drawing closer. CSP Today has chosen the next CSP Today India conference (12-13 March, New Delhi) as the time for the industry to reflect upon its progress and celebrate its first achievements.

At the awards ceremony, industry leaders will be recognized for their achievements in one of 4 categories: CSP India Developer Award, CSP India Engineering Performance Award, CSP India Technology and Supplier Award, and the prestigious CSP India Personality of the Year.

Matt Carr, Global Events Director at CSP Today, said at the opening of nominations that “CSP Today are excited to launch these esteemed awards, which will enhance the reputation of their recipients. I am particularly excited to launch the CSP India Personality of the Year award, a distinguished honor for the industry figure deemed worthy by their peers.”

All eyes will be on the CSP Today India 2013 Awards when nomination entry closes on February 4 and the finalists are announced on February 11. The awards are open to all industry stakeholders to nominate until February 4 at or by e-mail to

Matt Carr
+44 (0) 20 7375 7248