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American Ginseng

American ginseng plant

In 1987 regulations were adopted that established practices for the harvest and sale of American ginseng in New York State (6 NYCRR 193.4-193.8). These regulations established conservation practices including a ginseng harvest season and requirements for harvesting only mature plants. They also created a dealer permitting system and certification procedures. A year later, the United States Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) approved the New York State American Ginseng Program and lifted a ban on the export of New York grown ginseng. The program is reviewed annually to ensure that it meets all the federal requirements under The Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES).

New York's ginseng program has been set up to help those in the ginseng industry. The regulations have made it possible for New York ginseng dealers to conduct interstate and international trade in American ginseng while preventing the exploitation of wild ginseng.

American ginseng plant with berries

Ginseng is an important forest crop. It grows on well drained, rich soils under northern hardwoods. Much of New York State has the potential for growing ginseng. It also has the potential to provide more of an economic return than any other forest crop. Ginseng is an important source of income for many New Yorker's. The cultivation of ginseng is a rapidly expanding business in the state with an unlimited potential.

No ginseng may be harvested from any State Lands. Ginseng diggers must obtain permission from the landowner before harvesting on private property. Only mature plants may be harvested and the berries must be replanted immediately.

The ultimate goal of the ginseng program is to insure the survival of the species in the wild. By providing technical assistance and information to ginseng growers, harvesters and dealers, the DEC can help conserve the species, while providing jobs and income to many people.

Ginseng forms, lists and regulations:

New York State American Ginseng Regulations (PDF) (91 KB)

2013 New York State Ginseng Dealer List (PDF) (34 KB)

New York State Ginseng Dealer Permit Application (PDF) (14 KB)

New York State Ginseng Dealer Information Release Form (PDF) (13 KB)

New York State Ginseng Dealer Record & Report Form (PDF) (51 KB)

New York State Ginseng Inspectors
Region Contact Address Phone Fax E-mail
0 Jason Denham NYS DEC, Division of Lands & Forests
625 Broadway
Albany, NY 12233-4253
518-402-9425 518-402-9028 jpdenham@gw.dec.state.ny.us
1 John Wernet NYS DEC, SUNY at Stony Brook
50 Circle Road
Stony Brook, NY 11790-2356
631-444-0300 631-444-0272 jdwernet@gw.dec.state.ny.us
2 Jeffrey Speich NYS DEC
47-40 21st Street
Long Island City, NY 11101-5407
718-482-4942 718-482-4502 jmspeich@gw.dec.state.ny.us
3 Barbara Lucas-Wilson NYS DEC
21 South Putt Corners Road
New Paltz, NY 12561-1696
845-256-3078 845-255-4659 bjlucasw@gw.dec.state.ny.us
4 Jason Drobnack NYS DEC
65561 State Highway 10, Suite 1 (Jefferson Road)
Stamford, NY 12167
607-652-7365 607-652-2342 jmdrobna@gw.dec.state.ny.us
5 Rich McDermott NYS DEC
232 Golf Course Road
Warrensburg, NY 12885
518-623-1200 518-623-3603 rlmcderm@gw.dec.state.ny.us
6 Andrea Mercurio NYS DEC
7327 State Route 812
Lowville, NY 13367
315-376-3521 315-376-8059 almercur@gw.dec.state.ny.us
7 John Graham NYS DEC
1285 Fisher Avenue
Cortland, NY 13045-1090
607-753-3095 607-753-8532 jjgraham@gw.dec.state.ny.us
8 Tad Norton NYS DEC
7291 Coon Road
Bath, NY 14810-9728
607-776-2165 607-776-4392 rtnorton@gw.dec.state.ny.us
9 Chris Enser NYS DEC
182 East Union Street, Suite 3
Allegany, NY 14706-1328
716-372-0645 716-372-2113 caenser@gw.dec.state.ny.us

More about American Ginseng: