Chapter 8

Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Sustainable Assessment

Silvia C. Guillen, M. Paz Arraiza and Miguel A. Sarmiento

Abstract

Sustainable agriculture is based in the conservation of environmental and productive resources considering the socio-economical dimensions. The cultivation, production and collection of medicinal and aromatic plants (MAPs) are made up by a sector of the agriculture that should follow the concepts of sustainability. Our team researches in the area of sustainability, having developed agro-ecosystems and agroindustry valuation models. The objective was to develop evaluation tools with particular objectives: 1- an assessment model of lemon cultivation sustainability; 2- assessment tools in MAPs greenhouses and agro-industry; 3- introduction of principles for sustainable collection of wild species. Methodologies used by international organizations, like the UN or OECD, and specific models like FESLM (FAO) were taken as a reference. We worked with the construction of a Minimum Sustainable Set of Indicators (MSI) for each case. Sustainable assessment model for lemon cultivation were obtained. MSI for greenhouse’s MAPs cultivation and lemon and blueberries packing houses were developed. International principles for sustainable wild collection of MAPs were introduced. Considering the selected indicators, the results obtained are of those analysed systems that should check over and adjust their process, objectives and policies in the search of an improvement tendency towards sustainability. The harvest of wild species should start its way towards sustainability through the approach in the uses of standards.

Total Pages: 103-117 (15)

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