There has been a shift in universal trend from synthetic to herbal medicine recently. It is ancient wisdom that plants have therapeutic value and are used to treat various diseases since Neanderthal age. All ancient civilizations in the world are known to use plants for medicinal purposes. Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicines are well known to the world for their natural ingredients and multiple benefits. Nature has bestowed our country with an enormous wealth of medicinal plants; therefore India has often been referred to as the Medicinal Garden of the world.
Today, people around the globe are giving preference to alternative medicines such as ayurveda, naturopathy, homeopathy and herbal medicine. Herbal medicine is cost effective and less expensive than the medicines bought from an allopathic pharmacy.
Increasing realization of the side effects of allopathic medicines, coupled with the growing awareness about the medicinal benefits as well as therapeutic effect of herbal products is pushing up the demand for herbal extracts, dietary supplementsand herbal-based beauty aids worldwide.
The annual turnover of the Indian herbal medicinal industry is about Rs. 7,500 crore as against the pharmaceutical industry’s turnover of Rs. 14,500 crores with a growth rate of more than 15 percent. As per study commissioned by the Associated Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ASSOCHAM), the Indian herbal industry is projected to double to Rs.15, 000 crore by 2015, from the current 7,500 core business. India has a vast and rich resource of herbal raw materials and it can create a niche for itself in the global herbal market if the domestic industry produced quality products of international standards. The apex chamber estimates global herbal industry to grow to Rs 70,000 crore by 2015, more than double from the current level of Rs 30,000 crore.Small-scale players in the sector are likely to witness brighter times ahead.
India could make its presence felt in the world herbal market through quality products in view of growing bias towards herbal medicines, dietary supplements and skin and beauty aids because public perception of herbal products is a kin to organic food products. The Indian market can be divided into two categories. One that covers raw material needed by the industries and direct consumption for household remedies, while second category that comprises ready to use finished medicines, health supplements etc. There is a strong demand for raw stock of amla, isabgol, henna, ashwagandha and aloevera, and these materials are used in a big way in preparing ayurvedic formulations.
The demand for plant based medicines, health products, pharmaceuticals, food supplement, cosmetics etc are increasing in both developing and developed countries, due to the growing recognition that the natural products are non-toxic, have less side effects and easily available at affordable prices. India has lot of potential for producing world class herbal medicines. For the Entrepreneurship it is one of the areas of great opportunity & potential.The Indian herbal Industry is on a roll and poised to grow in the coming years owing to its high demands for herbal products.