FWD 2 Botanical Adulterants Monitor
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Dear Reader

All of us at BAPP, including the American Botanical Council (ABC), the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia (AHP), and the National Center for Natural Products Research (NCNPR) at the University of Mississippi, hope that you, your family, friends, and co-workers are safe. These are certainly difficult times for all of those who work in the fields of growing, processing, manufacturing, and marketing of herbal medicinal ingredients. The outbreak of COVID-19 has impacted the botanical industry in many ways, most importantly by demanding new approaches to keep employees safe while attempting to avoid disruptions of the botanical supply chain and product manufacturing. Another issue is the shortage of many supplies, from herbal ingredients, excipients, and packaging all the way to cleaning products and office supplies. Supply shortages are one of the factors that lead to an increase in attempts to sell materials which are diluted or substituted with undisclosed lower-cost ingredients – i.e., adulteration. In order to keep you informed, we are closely monitoring the situation, particularly with regard to those herbal ingredients which are currently in high demand, e.g., those with immunomodulating or antimicrobial activities, to see if there are reports of adulteration. 


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

ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program

Recent News 

Olive Oil Botanical Adulterants Prevention Bulletin Published 

One of the most popular vegetable oils, olive (Olea europaea, Oleaceae) oil is also believed to be among the most frequently adulterated food ingredients worldwide. The fraud includes mainly substitution with lower-cost vegetable oils, lower-grade olive oils such as refined olive oil or pomace oil (the pomace is the solid material remaining after pressing the fruit to remove the oil), and inaccurate country-of-origin labeling.


BAPP BAB Olive oil


Turmeric Raw Material and Products Laboratory Guidance Document Published by Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program

While turmeric (Curcuma longa, Zingiberaceae) has a long history of use as a spice and medicinal plant, its popularity has only recently started to surge in countries outside Asia. In 2018, it ranked second and third in herbal dietary supplement sales in the US natural food store and mainstream retail outlet channels, respectively, according to HerbalGram’s annual Herb Market Report.



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:
  • Extrasynthese
BAPP also gratefully acknowledges the endorsement of the World Naturopathic Federation.

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 and related quality control issues. Please note that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, conferences may be postponed or cancelled.



Previous Issues of “Botanical Adulterants Monitor”

Available here.

Regulatory Alerts


Adulterated Turmeric and Chili Powder Seized in Pakistani Spice Manufacturing Plant

According to a newspaper report, a spice factory in Kot Abdul Malik (Punjab, Pakistan) was found adding undeclared rice hull to turmeric (Curcuma longa, Zingiberaceae) and chili (Capsicum spp., Solanaceae) powders during a raid by the Punjab Food Authority.


Tea Adulteration on the Rise in India

Health authorities in Coimbatore (Tamil Nadu, India) have seized 712 kg of adulterated tea (Camellia sinensis, Theaceae) leaves from a warehouse, only a week after confiscating 440 kg in a raid in the same city.


Science Update

AHP Publishes Monograph with Analytical Standards for Boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum)

 Upton R, Petrone C. American Herbal Pharmacopoeia and Therapeutic Compendium: Boneset Aerial Parts: Eupatorium perfoliatum L. Scotts Valley, CA: American Herbal Pharmacopoeia. Monograph; 2019..



DNA Barcoding Reveals Adulteration and Contamination in Ashwagandha Root and Root Powders Sold on Indian Markets

Reviewed:  Nagendraprasad A, Varadharajan B, Madasamy P. Authentication of the market samples of ashwagandha by DNA barcoding reveals that powders are significantly more adulterated than roots. J Ethnopharmacol. 2020; Feb 29:112725. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2020.112725. [Epub ahead of print]



Assessment of Quality Differences in Turmeric Finished Products by 1H NMR and HPTLC

Reviewed:  Chatzinasiou L, Booker A, MacLennan E, Mackonochie M, Heinrich M. The DNA-based authentication of commercial herbal products reveals their globally widespread adulteration. Front Pharmacol. 2019;10:1227.


Boswellic Acid Contents in Commercial Boswellia Dietary Supplements for Humans and Animals

Reviewed:  Miscioscia E, Shmalberg J, Scott KC. Measurement of 3-acetyl-11-keto-beta-boswellic acid and 11-keto-beta-boswellic acid in Boswellia serrata supplements administered to dogs. BMC Vet Res. 2019;15:270.


Correlation Between Boswellic and Lupeolic Acid Contents in Dietary Supplements and Their In Vitro Cytotoxic and Anti-inflammatory Activities

Reviewed:  Schmiech M, Lang SJ, Ulrich J, Werner K, Rashan LJ, Syrovets T, Simmet T. UHPLC‐ Comparative investigation of frankincense nutraceuticals: Correlation of boswellic and lupeolic acid contents with cytokine release inhibition and toxicity against triple-negative breast cancer cells. Nutrients. 2019;11(10): pii:E2341.



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.



About the

The ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants 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 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

CV Sciences, Inc.

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.

LifeSeasons, 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.

Neptune Wellness Solutions

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.

NutraSource Diagnostics, Inc.

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

College of Practitioners of Phytotherapy

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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