Group pushes for new laws to promote medicinal plants, not pharmaceuticals

Representatives, academics and experts join together in creating a national law to boost the market of medicinal plants and natural products in Mexico, in order to give them good operation and avoid pressure by pharmaceutical companies.

The First National Forum in the Legislative Palace of San Lazaro is working towards building a comprehensive public policy for sustainable use medicinal plants and natural products in Mexico.

The director of the Autonomous University of Chapingo (UACh), Jose Barrales Dominguez, lamented that large pharmaceutical companies promote the restriction of medicinal plants and the Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risk (COFEPRIS) also prohibits the use of some species in Mexico, arguing that “care should be taken” with these products.

Of the Autonomous Metropolitan University, Andrés Fierro Alvarez said that in the country, two-thirds of the population relies on medicinal plants to cure various ailments.

He said of the 30 thousand species of flora that exist in Mexico, three thousand are used for medicinal purposes and about 250 types are sold every day in the markets.

UACh, Dr. Jesus Axayacatl Cuevas Sanchez, presented the topic “Medicinal Plant Genetic Resources in Mexico”, which highlighted the need for this is a sector, not only productive and competitive, but sustainable, ecologically and culturally.

He said of the more than 30,000 plant species, 25,000 can be important resources as medicines.

Defining a sustainable production system of curative species; promote cultivation in rural and urban areas, and education programs at all levels.

Finally, Luis Vazquez Vazquez, Mixtec traditional doctor, said his work has to do with the ancient knowledge that is not valid, if not passed down by an academic body.


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