FWD 2 Botanical Adulterants Monitor


Dear Reader

The Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program (BAPP) has released its first publication in 2019, a bulletin on adulteration of ashwagandha roots, and root extracts. Despite its long history of use in Ayurvedic medicine, the primary traditional medicine system in India, the popularity of ashwagandha has increased only recently in the United States, now being one of the top 10 best-selling herbs in natural food stores in this country. Unfortunately, there have been reports of adulteration, primarily by replacing ashwagandha root with undeclared ashwagandha leaf material. At the same time, there are legitimate products on the market with both ashwagandha root and leaf extracts, showing the importance of transparent and accurate labeling. Ashwagandha leaf also contains withanolides, which are the steroidal lactones to which many extracts are standardized and which are believed to be at least in part responsible for the benefits of ashwagandha. The Botanical Adulterants Prevention Bulletin on ashwagandha root, and root extracts provides a summary on these issues.


  Stefan Gafner, PhD
Chief Science Officer, ABC
Technical Director, ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program

ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program

Recent News 

Botanical Adulterants Prevention Bulletin on Ashwagandha Roots and Root Extracts Published by BAPP 

Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera, Solanaceae) roots have a history of use as part of the Ayurvedic medicine system in India. The roots are used as a general tonic to increase strength, energy, and sexual stamina.

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BAB Ashwagandha


Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program’s Appreciation of Peer Reviewer Contributions 

The extensive peer review of documents published as part of BAPP is an integral part of providing balanced and accurate information to the international botanical trade. The Botanical Adulterants Prevention Bulletins and Laboratory Guidance Documents sent for peer review in 2018 were evaluated by 14-25 experts from academia, government, industry, and nonprofit organizations, while the Botanical Adulterants Monitor was assessed by three to five reviewers.

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ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program Welcomes New Supporters and Underwriters 

The ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program is grateful to the following companies that have recently committed to financially underwriting the Program:
  • K. Patel Phyto Extractions Pvt. Ltd.
  • MIDI, Inc.
  • Regular Girl
  • Taiyo International, Inc.
  • Tomorrow’s Nutrition

Upcoming Events

Below are descriptions and links to some of the upcoming conferences, seminars, and workshops that may be of interest to learn more on adulteration.



Previous Issues of “Botanical Adulterants Monitor”

Available here.

Science Update

Two Methods Published to Distinguish between Cynanchum wilfordii and Cynanchum auriculatum Root Tubers

Kim Y, Choi H, Shin J, Jo A, Lee KE, Cho SS, Hwang YP, Choi C. Molecular discrimination of Cynanchum wilfordii and Cynanchum auriculatum by InDel markers of chloroplast DNA. Molecules. 2018;23(6):pii:E1337.

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Authenticity Evaluation of Bulk Saw Palmetto Extracts by Isotopic Fingerprinting

Reviewed: Perini M, Paolini M, Pace R, Camin F. The use of stable isotope ratio to characterize saw palmetto (Serenoa repens). Food Chem. 2019;274:26-34.

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saw palmetto


No Evidence for the Presence of 1,4-Androstadiene-3,17-dione in Rhodiola rosea

Reviewed: Da J, Yang L, Wu WY, Guo DA, Panossian AG. The pseudoendogenous anabolic steroid 1,4-androstadiene-3,17-dione does not occur naturally in Rhodiola rosea L. radix and rhizome. Phytochem Lett. 2018;23:155-163.

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NIR Spectroscopy with Chemometric Analysis Allows One to Distinguish Cinnamon from Spent Cinnamon and Cassia

Reviewed: Shawky E, Selim DA. Rapid authentication and quality evaluation of Cinnamomum verum powder using near-infrared spectroscopy and multivariate analysis. Planta Med. 2018;84(18):1380-1387.

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No Adulteration in Garcinia Crude Raw Materials and Dietary Supplements

Reviewed: Seethapathy GS, Tadesse M, Urumarudappa SKJ, Gunaga SV, Vasudeva R, Malterud KE, Shaanker RU, de Boer HJ, Ravikanth G, Wangensteen H. Authentication of Garcinia fruits and food supplements using DNA barcoding and NMR spectroscopy. Sci Rep. 2018;8:10561.



Useful Links and Resources

For more information and updates on the work of the three partner organizations of the ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program, please visit ABC at www.herbalgram.org, AHP at www.herbal-ahp.org, and NCNPR at www.pharmacy.olemiss.edu/ncnpr.

Other Helpful Resources and Links

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About the


The ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program is a consortium of independent nonprofit organizations whose mission relates to education, scientific research, and quality of botanical dietary ingredients and related plant-derived materials. The consortium is headed by three nonprofit groups dealing with education and research on medicinal herbs and other beneficial plants: the American Botanical Council, the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia, and the National Center for Natural Products Research at the University of Mississippi. The program is underwritten or endorsed by more than 130 natural products industry companies, independent analytical laboratories, contract research organizations, nonprofit and professional organizations, trade associations, accredited institutions of education in natural medicine, law firms, and media companies that are involved in the production, supply, manufacture, distribution, marketing, analysis, research, and/or education of herbal dietary ingredients and supplements, in the United States and internationally. All publications of the Program are available free-access on its homepage including the “Botanical Adulterants Monitor,” an e-newsletter that conveys Program news, regulatory updates, and recent scientific publications related to adulteration, contamination, identity, and authenticity of botanical raw materials, extracts, and essential oils. Companies, organizations, foundations, and/or individuals interested in supporting this program are invited to contact Ms. Denise Meikel, ABC Development Director, at (512) 926-4900, ext. 120, or by email.


Thank You to Our Supporters

Underwriters and Supporters of the ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program (as of February 15, 2019)*

*By acknowledging the generous support of these companies and organizations, ABC, AHP, and NCNPR are not endorsing any ingredients or products that may be produced or marketed by them.

Financial Underwriters

21st Century Healthcare

AdvoCare International L.P.

Agilent Technologies, Inc.

Aloecorp, Inc.

Amen Clinics

Amway/Nutrilite Health Institute

Arbonne International

Arizona Nutritional Supplements

Artemis International, Inc.

Atrium Innovations

Aveda Corporation

Beachbody, LLC

BI Nutraceuticals


Bionorica SE



Botanical Liaisons

Bruker BioSpin


Cepham, Inc.

Chemi Nutra

CNCA Health

Complete Phytochemical Solutions

Crila Health

dicentra, Inc.

Doctor’s Best

Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps

DolCas Biotech, LLC

Douglas Laboratories

Draco Natural Products

Emerson Ecologics

Enzymatic Therapy, Inc.

Ethical Naturals, Inc.

Eu Yan Sang International




Flavex Naturextrakte GmbH


Fruit d'Or

Gaia Herbs

GE Nutrients, Inc.

Global Health Industries

GNC, Inc.

Healthy Lifestyle Brands, LLC

Helios Corp.

Herb Pharm

Herbalife International, Inc.

Horphag Research


Indena USA, Inc.

Indfrag Limited

Ingredient Identity

Ixoreal Biomed, Inc.

Jarrow Formulas

K. Patel Phyto Extractions Pvt. Ltd

Layn USA, Inc.


Markan Global Enterprises, Inc.

Financial Underwriters

Martin Bauer, Inc.

MediHerb / Integria Healthcare

Metagenics, Inc.

MIDI, Inc.

Natreon, Inc.


Natural Alternatives International, Inc.

Natural Factors Nutritional Products, Inc.
   /Bioclinic Naturals

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage

Natural Remedies Pvt. Ltd.

Nature's Answer

Nature's Sunshine Products

Nature's Way


Naturex, Inc.

NBTY, Inc.

New Chapter, Inc.

The New Frontier Foundation Fund of the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation

Ningbo Greenhealth Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

Novel Ingredients

NOW Foods

Nu Skin Enterprises/Pharmanex

Nutraceuticals Corp.

Organic India

Ortho Molecular Products

Pacific Nutritional Inc.

Paragon Laboratories

Pathway International Pty Limited

Perrigo Company

Pharmatoka SAS

Pharmavite, LLC

Phoenix Formulations

PLT Health Solutions, Inc.

Polyphenolics, Division of Constellation Brands, Inc.

Pure Encapsulations

Rainbow Light Nutritional Systems

Regular Girl

RFI Ingredients, LLC

Rosenbush and Zimmerman Family Fund

Sabinsa Corporation

Schwabe North America


SFI Flordis

Shaklee Corp.

Standard Process, Inc.

Strategic Sourcing, Inc.

Taiyo International, Inc.

Thorne Research, Inc.

Tishcon Corp.

Tomorrow's Nutrition

Traditional Medicinals, Inc.

TSI Group


Univera, Inc.

Valensa International

V.D.F. FutureCeuticals

Verdure Sciences

Vitamin Shoppe

VitaQuest International

Whole Foods Market

Trade Associations

American Herbal Products Association (US)

Australian Self Medication Industry (Australia)

Australian Tea Tree Industry Association (Australia)

British Herbal Medicine Association (UK)

Canadian Health Food Association (Canada)

Complementary Medicines Australia (Australia)

Consumer Healthcare Products Association (US)

Council for Responsible Nutrition (US)

International Alliance of Dietary/Food Supplement Associations (IADSA)

National Animal Supplement Council (US)

Natural Products Association (US)

Natural Products New Zealand (NZ)

United Natural Products Alliance (US)

Nonprofit/Professional Associations

Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine

American Association of Naturopathic Physicians

American Herbalists Guild

American Society of Pharmacognosy

AOAC International

Council of Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia Convention of the United States
Integrative Healthcare Policy Consortium

Irish Register of Herbalists (IRE)

National Institute of Medical Herbalists (UK)

Natural Health Products Research Society of Canada (NHPRS Canada)

Personalized Lifestyle Medicine Institute

Society for Medicinal Plant and Natural Product Research (GA)


Bastyr University

Boucher Institute for Naturopathic Medicine

Center for Natural Products Technologies, College of Pharmacy, University of Illinois-Chicago

Hong Kong Baptist University’s School of Chinese Medicine

National College of Natural Medicine

Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine

University of Bridgeport College of Naturopathic Medicine
Third-Party Analytical Laboratories

Alkemist Labs

AuthenTechnologies LLC

Bent Creek Institute

BotaniCert (France)

British Columbia Institute of Technology


Covance Laboratories

Creative Accord, LLC

Eurofins Scientific Inc.

Flora Research Labs

NSF International

PhytoLab (Germany)

Spectrix Labs

Tampa Bay Analytical


Alive Publishing Group

Delicious Living


Holistic Primary Care

Informa Exhibitions US

Integrator Blog

Media Relations, Inc.

Modern Healthcare Practitioner

Natural Foods Merchandiser

Natural Medicine Journal

Natural Products INSIDER


Nutraceuticals World


Nutrition Business Journal

Nutrition Industry Executive

Nutritional Outlook

Vitamin Retailer

WholeFoods Magazine


Law Firms & Regulatory Consultants

Amin Talati & Upadhye, LLC

Greenberg Traurig, LLP (James Prochnow)

Law Office of Holly Bayne, P.C.

Robert Forbes & Associates

Susan Brienza, LLC

Ullman, Shapiro & Ullman, LLP

Contract Research Organizations

KGK Synergize


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