The Indian herbal market size is currently worth Rs 7,000 crore and the export of its medicines would grow at 25 per cent to Rs 9,000 crore, Assocham said in its study, Herbal Industry Biz Potential.
Setting up of Herbal Farm Clusters by the government, promotion of exports, doubling the cultivation of medicinal plants, continuous focus for research and development on product and effective marketing of herbal products are the reasons cited by Assocham for the growth in herbal industry.
"The study reveals that out of 700 plant species commonly used in India, only 20 per cent were earlier being cultivated on commercial scale and 90 per cent of medicinal plant used by the industries are collected from the wild," Assocham President Venugopal Dhoot said.
However, the study states that the major hurdle for cultivating medicinal and aromatic plants as a sustainable agricultural profession are the lack of organised and regulated markets in India.
"The regulated production on scientific lines, effective enforcement of licensing system and setting up of Export Promotion Zones (EPZ) in select states will push up exports of herbal material and medicines," it added.
The study said that the farmers should be trained, particularly in post-harvest handling of the products and stressed for the dissemination of information about the prospects of cultivation, processing and marketing of medicinal plants.