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TOPIC: Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program

Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24418

To have any legitimacy in this venture, we have to have a set of goals that are aligned with the goals of our backers and of the ears of those we want to hear and understand us! (1) Our primary goal should be to work to prevent the extinction of Wild Ginseng and to work to prevent any adverse Legislation and Laws concerning harvesting, buying and selling Ginseng. (2) In turn, our secondary goals should be to prevent any adverse Legislation or Laws concerning Wild Ginseng from causing the same to Wild-Simulated and Woodsgrown Ginseng and to the small time growers of such crops. Both (1) and (2) are fairly interrelated and should be combined in any work that we do. We cannot have it one way and not the other! To work with Wild Ginseng Conservation groups, State Ag Departments, politicians and ecologists, we can't state that we are are working to preserve Wild Ginseng and to prevent any adverse Legislation and Laws concerning it's harvest and sales but then specifically concentrate our efforts on preserving the interests of small time growers of Wild-Simulated and Woodsgrown Ginseng. We must combine these two goals together with the primary goal of preserving Wild Ginseng and it's harvest and sales to have any real legitimacy in the eyes of these folks!


Frank

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24420

Frank,

I'm not disagreeing with you. But you are absolutely getting the cart before the horse. I know that many small growers are also diggers, and many diggers plant seed. I have never excluded anyone at this point, only advised that we need to do first things first. If we cannot design a program with which the administrative folks see legitimacy, and bring the small growers out of the shadows, the rest just doesn't matter.

Administratively speaking, there really shouldn't be set goals until we have a group of people who are willing to put their names on paper and be counted as part of a group. What you or I see might not be what the rest of them see. Further, why would we want to be extensions of other groups? I think we are unique enough that we can carry our own banner and not be beholding to any other group. Based on my sales alone I'm certain that there are more than enough of us small guys out there to create a substantial unified voice if we can just go by the numbers and not get ahead of ourselves.

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24422

BCastle wrote:

Frank,

I'm not disagreeing with you. But you are absolutely getting the cart before the horse. I know that many small growers are also diggers, and many diggers plant seed. I have never excluded anyone at this point, only advised that we need to do first things first. If we cannot design a program with which the administrative folks see legitimacy, and bring the small growers out of the shadows, the rest just doesn't matter.

Administratively speaking, there really shouldn't be set goals until we have a group of people who are willing to put their names on paper and be counted as part of a group. What you or I see might not be what the rest of them see. Further, why would we want to be extensions of other groups? I think we are unique enough that we can carry our own banner and not be beholding to any other group. Based on my sales alone I'm certain that there are more than enough of us small guys out there to create a substantial unified voice if we can just go by the numbers and not get ahead of ourselves.


Brad,

You are right, we need the numbers and the numbers are members! In your postings, it just seemed to me that you were ignoring the other groups that matter in this venture and I could see them (the other groups) as viewing it the same way. We cannot make anyone feel left out in the cold!

I never said or would I want us to become an extension of any other group! However, we will need the support and maybe backing of some or all of these, to ever get a foot in the door and obtain legitimacy. We all are a unique group of people and we should have an Organization name to reflect this, a name that stands out and people take notice of when they see it or hear it mentioned!


Frank

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24426

Frank,


This is exactly what I'm talking about when I say that most folks don't understand administrative issues/actions/talk.

Seriously, you need to listen to what I say, not what you think I might have said.

If you think you can do better...then by all means say so and I'll drop it right here and now. I am not so certain I even want to do this yet. Otherwise, things take time and must be done from the ground up and in order. Ideas are good, but lets not get ahead of ourselves here. We can speculate on what it takes to \"get a foot in the door\" or to gain legitimacy, but in the real world it isn't up to us. It is up to the people we want to listen to us. If we do not do what they want us to do as far as becoming a legitimate voice, then we are wasting everyone's time. We would be better off to meet at a local cave and bitch and whine among ourselves...at least that way everyone will agree with us..right?

Just like you cannot make someone pay you for something they don't want, or pay a price higher than they are willing to pay for a thing, you will never ever be able to force someone to listen to you and try to understand your point unless they want to do so. Ever.

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24435

BCastle wrote:

Frank,


This is exactly what I'm talking about when I say that most folks don't understand administrative issues/actions/talk.

Seriously, you need to listen to what I say, not what you think I might have said.

If you think you can do better...then by all means say so and I'll drop it right here and now. I am not so certain I even want to do this yet. Otherwise, things take time and must be done from the ground up and in order. Ideas are good, but lets not get ahead of ourselves here. We can speculate on what it takes to \"get a foot in the door\" or to gain legitimacy, but in the real world it isn't up to us. It is up to the people we want to listen to us. If we do not do what they want us to do as far as becoming a legitimate voice, then we are wasting everyone's time. We would be better off to meet at a local cave and bitch and whine among ourselves...at least that way everyone will agree with us..right?

Just like you cannot make someone pay you for something they don't want, or pay a price higher than they are willing to pay for a thing, you will never ever be able to force someone to listen to you and try to understand your point unless they want to do so. Ever.


Sorry if I pissed you off! I spent a total of 38 years and 15 days dealing with Military and Government Officials and know and understand quite a bit about administrative issues/actions/talk. However, so as to not conflict with you, I will back out and leave you to it! I will explore some options on my own in case they are needed.


Frank

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24437

Very interesting set of posts here. Been off-forum for the past several days, travelling.

We are working on something like this in NC, however it is still in it's infancy.

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24446

Frank,

I'm not at all pissed off. However, I\"ll not be fighting anyone over trying to do something to help them out if they don't think I know what I'm doing well enough to let me do it.

I'm just very serious that I don't even know if I WANT to do this yet...but I AM already looking into it. I'll let you all know what I find out when I do.

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24448

DEEP discussions fellas.
All I know is what may or may not come down the road for us small time growers could be challenging depending on so many factors. So as many have said in the past, keep all receipts of the seed you purchase. Keep well documented detailed maps of where you plant your ginseng seed. Take pictures of planting areas when planting. It would be beneficial to take pictures annually of each of your planting sites.

Not sure if this will be the \"Save All\" if things change down the road. But it sure won't hurt to be prepared just in case it is needed to dig and sell our own roots that we planted from purchased seed.

I know you fellas are talking about a lot more than this in your previous post. But I save all my receipts and document everything just in case I have too justify that I raised this crop with intent to harvest and sell someday. I hope that is enough if things do change someday.I guess only time will tell.

Good luck fellas.
Latt

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24449

Brad, Frank, and All

The organization I work for here in Ohio (Rural Action) helped start The Roots of Appalachia Growers Association back in 1999-2000, along with motivated/concerned growers. Unfortunately it has gone largely dormant at this point, but people still contact me about it since we still have a website (that hasn't been updated since 2008!). It was/is membership based, with about 75-100 paid members at it's peak. Members were mostly in Ohio, but there were also members from KY, PA, WV, etc. These were folks who were not shy about standing up and saying \"I'm a grower and I want to be recognized.\" Unfortunately at the time there was very little support at the regulatory level for developing a grower program in Ohio, and as concerns go unanswered people's energy begins to wane.

Associations like this have come and gone several times over the years. There's the West Virginia Ginseng Growers Association (who was successful in getting a grower program in 2007), but I have not heard much about them being active recently. There was the Empire State Ginseng Growers Association in NY, which also fizzled out. And historically speaking there were several state associations for cultivated growers, and even a National Ginseng Growers Association. Unfortunately it is just very difficult to coordinate these groups when people are spread all over. Although things are getting easier with internet communication.

There are good people in Pennsylvania who are working to address the issues raised by Brad and Frank to ensure not only recognition of wild-simulated ginseng growers through verification programs, but wild stewards as well. The idea is that wild harvesters are growers too, when they practice good stewardship. An all encompassing program like that would allow private forestlands where people are stewarding wild ginseng to be verifyied just like someones wild-simulated patches.

I am all for organizing growers and stewards into a cohesive group. This is what is needed in every State. I think that is the only way that this demographic can achieve the lobbying power needed to get policy/administrative changes that protect growers and the culture of ginseng. Unfortunately the way ginseng is regulated (by each individual state) segregates the ginseng community into isolated groups, making it difficult to make progress at the national or regional levels.

The bigger problem, and this is the real kicker, the USFWS basically has to get permission from the 130 + countries that have signed onto the CITES Treaty to make changes to our federal ginseng laws. I was shocked to discover that when I attended the State Ginseng Coordinators Meeting and public forum held by the USFWS in 2008. American gisneng exists here and only here, but 130+ countries who have no Panax quinquefolius get to approve or disapprove of how it is regulated in North America.

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Re:Ginseng Poaching Featuered on CBS This Morning Program 4 years 1 month ago #24450

RAF,

Thanks for your perspective. I was aware (and had belonged) to at least one of the other organizations you mentioned, and suspected there might be others. This was all part of the research I had intended to do. My suspicion is that these were groups brought together without long-term goals, and were more interested in immediate effect of a certain set of issues, or as opposition to the new federal mandates forced upon the states.

I believe any growers group, to be successful, must be long-term oriented, must be national in scope yet involved at the state level, and must have other benefits other than just being able to say one is a part of that organization. Perhaps this includes a marketing plan of which members can avail themselves among other things. Referencing the regulations, the states can only do so much. They are being directed by the USFWS and in order to maintain a harvest season at all, they must comply and gain approval from the feds. However, I think there is room within this area in which an organization could if nothing else unify the state's laws and perhaps prepare them to protect small growers should the feds drastically change the game.

However, before anything else can be considered, the viability of the ability to obtain legitimacy in the eyes of state administrators seems to be the largest hurdle which must be overcome.

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