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HerbalGram 51

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Herbs of Commerce, Second Edition Published by AHPA


The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) has published the second edition of Herbs of Commerce, a guide for common names for herbs. This fully revised document has been expanded from the original list of 550 plants, and now provides a single "standardized" common name for each of more than 2,000 separate plant species in trade.

"We are indebted to the many AHPA members and other contributors and to the dedicated editors who helped create this authoritative reference," said Michael McGuffin, AHPA president and managing editor of the revision. "We are confident that this reference will contribute valuable guidance for consistent labeling of many more products containing herbs."

AHPA published the first edition of Herbs of Commerce in 1992 to address consumer confusion about the common names of botanical ingredients. That original document has now been incorporated by reference into Federal labeling regulations for botanical ingredients in supplement products, so that, "The common or usual name of ingredients of dietary supplements that are botanicals (including fungi and algae) shall be consistent with the names standardized in Herbs of Commerce, 1992 edition" (21 CFR 101.4). AHPA will request the FDA to accept the revised edition as a substitute for the original.

The revised text is organized into two alphabetical sections, one by Latin binomial and the other by standardized common name, followed by an extensive index. In addition, Chinese (pinyin) and Ayurvedic names are provided for hundreds of the listed plants. The taxonomic and technical editors for the revision were John T. Kartesz, Ph.D., Arthur O. Tucker, Ph.D., and Albert Y. Leung, Ph.D., each of whom is imminently qualified in the area of botanical taxonomy and who were responsible for review of the nomenclature. Financial support was contributed by AHPA member companies Nutraceutical Corporation, AM Todd Botanicals, Celestial Seasonings, and Nature's Way.

The retail price of Herbs of Commerce, 2nd edition is $95.00, and all AHPA members will receive a $30 discount. To purchase your copy, please contact the AHPA Administrative office via email, <>, or telephone, 301/588-1171 ext. 108. Non-AHPA members may also order from the American Botanical Council's online catalog <>.  

[AHPA Press Release, Dec. 28, 2000]