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In this issue, we continue to honor our good friend, collaborator, and longtime ABC Trustee Steven Foster by including some of our favorite images from his impressive archive of medicinal and aromatic plant (MAP) photographs. As most ABC members and others in the medicinal plant community already know, Steven died suddenly and unexpectedly in January 2022. At ABC, many of us are still exploring the depths and scope of his gifts to the world, particularly his writings and amazing photography, which have been featured in HerbalGram for decades. ABC editorial staff members chose 24 of Steven’s photos for our pictorial tribute, which depict his gift of capturing the light around plants. By our publishing his photographs in this issue (and in future issues), Steven will continue to bring light into the world of MAPs for years to come.

We also report on the 17th annual ABC Celebration and Botanical Excellence Awards ceremony, which was held in March in Anaheim, California, as part of Natural Products Expo West. Expo and the ABC Celebration were not held in person for the past two years due to the pandemic, although ABC produced a one-hour video of its 2021 virtual Celebration that can be accessed on ABC’s website and YouTube channel. Our hearty congratulations to the 2022 award recipients for their commitment, devotion, passion, and excellence in their various contributions to many aspects of herbal medicine in the United States and internationally.

In the past few months ABC has announced three new additions to the ABC Board of Trustees, all of whom are old friends, longtime members of the ABC Advisory Board, and widely acknowledged experts in the science of herbal medicine: Tieraona Low Dog, MD, Josef Brinckmann, and Christopher Hobbs, PhD, LAc. We welcome them to the board and thank them for their willingness to devote more time and energy to help guide and govern ABC and propel ABC’s unique nonprofit research and educational mission, publications, and programs.

The ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program (BAPP) has now published 73 peer-reviewed documents. Most recently, BAPP published a Laboratory Guidance Document (LGD) on ginkgo leaf extracts, written by ABC Chief Science Officer and BAPP Technical Director Stefan Gafner, PhD, and reviewed by 30 analytical experts in academia, government, and industry. Ginkgo is one of the world’s most researched and popular phytomedicines, and its adulteration has been a well-documented issue for two decades. The new LGD will help companies, researchers, and regulatory agencies analyze bulk ginkgo materials and finished products.

Recent market research indicates that a growing number of consumers prefer to buy herbal products that are perceived to have sustainably sourced ingredients and/or are sold in sustainable packaging. Consumers are even willing to pay higher prices for sustainable products — a trend that has grown in the past five years. Thanks to HerbalGram contributor Karen Raterman for her article explaining two major consumer surveys in 2021 that documented this important trend.

In addition to our photo tribute to Steven Foster, we include six memorial tributes to valued colleagues and friends in the global medicinal plant community: herbalist and educator Marlene Adelmann-Mitcheson, natural product chemist Dennis Awang, PhD, herb business insurance broker Dick Griffin, natural product chemist Professor Otto Sticher, PhD, consumer advocate and activist Jim Turner, and traditional Chinese medicine research expert Professor Xie Peishan.

Our editorial project list includes additional tributes which we do not have adequate space to include in this issue. As we honor our departed friends and colleagues, it becomes increasingly important for all of us to maintain and enhance our health as robustly as possible, and to ensure that we communicate to our family members, friends, and colleagues how much we truly value them in our lives, which are so much richer for their presence.

–Mark Blumenthal