(10/08/2005)
Recent Federal regulations concerning American ginseng are wreaking havoc among many West Virginia growers and landholders.

In response to these regulations, the West Virginia Ginseng Growers Association (WVGGA) will hold a fall forum Saturday October 15 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the WVU Forest Resource Building at Coopers Rock State Park.

State and Federal management efforts continue to impact the future of forest farming of ginseng in the eastern United States.

This forum will review the most current issues facing growers and will gather critically needed perspective and ideas for improving management and regulation of the industry.

This forum is aimed at anyone interested in American ginseng.

Everyone in attendance will be invited to share opinion, ideas, and experiences through a variety of activities including panel and group discussions facilitated by industry and Extension.

The issues involved with recent ginseng regulations are complex and growers are strongly encouraged to attend to provide input, gain insights, and to work together.

The first session of the forum will cover sustainable production techniques for novice and experienced growers. The remainder of the day will revolve around the new Federal regulations concerning ginseng, how they are affecting West Virginia landholders and wildcrafters, and how those stakeholders might organize for mutual benefits in the future.

Growers and educators from New York, Pennsylvania and Ohio will also be in attendance. This forum will begin the process of forming a National Ginseng Growers Association.

This forum is sponsored by The Center for Sustainable Resources, The WV Ginseng Growers Association, RAGGA, The Appalachian Forest Resource Center, Rural Action, West Virginia University Extension Service, and the Pennsylvania State University School of Forest Resources. Funds are provided by USDA NESARE.

Lunch will be provided to all those in attendance and pre-registration is required. Call Fred Hays at (304) 548-7117 to pre-register. If you wish to be on a panel, please mention this when you call.


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