No. 02/04

Welcome to FAO's NWFP-Digest-L a free e-mail journal that covers all aspects of non-wood forest products. A special thank you to all those who have shared information with us.

Back issues of the Digest may be found on FAO's NWFP home page:

1. Brazil nuts: contraband lowers production
2. Cupuaçu trademark annulled in Japan
3. Ecotourism agitates animals
4. Palm hearts: Illegal exports seized
5. Brazil: President Lula launches initiative for Caatinga forest and its communities
6. Brazil: Government to create clear regulations for those who want to invest in sustainable forestry production
7. Bangladesh: Local communities and ecotourism
8. Cameroon: MINEF and other stakeholders recommend increased control
9. China: 64 new national forest parks approved
10. Namibia: Torra Conservancy wins UNDP award
11. Russian Far East: NTFP small business development project
12. Uganda: Honey exports to EU
13. Uganda, Kenya in cross-border pact
14. Vietnam: Forest cover in northern mountains expected to expand 20 percent
15. Zambia: Rampant deforestation worries Forest College
16. Zambia: OPPAZ stimulates honey exports
17. Congo Basin Forest Partnership
18. EC takes steps toward establishing protected area network
19. WWF survey reveals gaps in management of forest protected areas
20. World Bank: Estimating poverty
21. New Report on NTFPs
22. IUCN and UNDP launch joint publication on biodiversity and millennium development goals
23. Which biodiversity?
24. World Bank/PROFOR - New publication series on Changes in Forest Management in Transition
25. CD-Rom: Reference Guide on Sustainable Forestry and Biodiversity Management
26. Other publications of interest
27. Web sites and e-zines


32. Request for information - economic data on NWFP
33. Request for information: training in NWFP
34. FAO's Forestry Branch Library


1. Brazil nuts: contraband lowers production

Source: O Liberal, 25 January 2004 (in Amazon News, 29.1.04)

The contraband of Brazil nuts leaving Brazil for Bolivia is the cause of Brazil's loosing its title as the world leader in this product's exportation. The first place has been occupied by Bolivia, which has tripled its Brazil nut commercialization: it is being sold in its natural state in the EU, USA and Asia. According to the Brazilian Association for Brazil Nut Exports, in 2003 approx. 16 000 tons were removed from the Brazilian forests and crossed over the frontiers with Bolivia from the Brazilian's states of Acre and Rodonia, at a loss of US$ 20 million, which does not include federal tax evasion.

Assisted by Brazilian middlemen, the Bolivian smugglers enter Brazil through its borders in the States of Acre and Rondonia, where monitoring is almost non-existent. They are also working in the Amazonia territory, principally in the Purus River area; this is a region that has nuts that have hardly been explored, and where the product is much thicker than in other areas. It is due to this difference in size that the Brazilian exporters discovered the smuggled goods. It was noted that Bolivia was selling nuts that are much thicker, while the nuts from Bolivia are small, like those that are found in Acre. Although the nut is of good quality, its shell is fragile, making its export more difficult.

2. Cupuaçu trademark annulled in Japan

Source: ComCiencia, 22 March 2004 (in Amazon News, 25.3.04)

The name of the Cupuaçu fruit, which was to be trademarked by the multi-national Asahi Foods and Cupuaçu International, has returned to the public domain. Japan's Trademark Office annulled the registration requested in the beginning of March, and this week the stature of limitations has expired for appealing this decision.

The cancellation of this trademark is the result of a campaign "Cupuaçu is ours" that ComCiencia undertook in conjunction with the Acre State organization Amazonlink and the Amazonian Working Group. "This is symbolic" - explained Micheal Schmidlehner, the president of Amazonlink - "this invalidation represents an important step for civil society to exert pressure and to be successful in assuring that illegal patents and registrations are not permitted. The campaign was also useful for many people to begin to understand what biopiracy actually means. We still have a lot to do".

Amazonlink launches this week a new site about biopiracy that contains documentation regarding 12 other example of bio-piracy or illegitimate registering of trademarks. They involve well-know cases and other less famous, such as a substance - of the Wapixana People of Roraima, the biribiri (Octotea radioei) - registered by a Canadian company.

3. Ecotourism agitates animals

Source: New Scientist, 4 March 2004 (in IISD Earth Negotiations Bulletin Linkages Update, 16.3.04)

Animals in areas that promote ecotourism have changed behaviour, heart rates and stress hormone levels, according to a recent report in New Scientist magazine. In response, conservationists have called for research on the impact of ecotourism on animals and for studies to be conducted before ecotourism projects are initiated.

For full story, please see:

4. Palm hearts: Illegal exports seized

Source: IBAMA , 16 March 2004 (in Amazon News, 18.3.04)

IBAMA and Environmental Police officers captured 27 294 kg of hearts of palm (Euterpe oleracea) packaged in over 4 000 boxes from Jacobpalm Comercial Ltda, Exportadora Indústria and Comércio de Conservas Alteroza Ltda. in the port of Belem. The forest product was seized because its dimensions were below the IBAMA regulation diameter of 2cm.

According to IBAMA's Executive Director in Para State, Marcilio Monteiro, technical studies indicate that 2cm is ideal when cutting the heart of the palm. He states that after flowering, at almost 3 or 4 years, the sustainability of the plant can be guaranteed. "What these exporters are doing is stimulating the early cutting of the açaizeiro and diminishing the offer of the açai", he affirms.

Distributed in the States of Para, Amapa and Maranhao, developments in the management of the açaí palm demonstrate the economic and environmental viability of both the fruits and the heart of the palm.

5. Brazil: President Lula launches initiative for Caatinga forest and its communities

Source: UNDP Newsfront, 20 February 2004

President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva took an important step to conserve the unique Caatinga forest in drought-prone northeast Brazil through a US$27 million initiative he launched earlier this month. The project will also improve livelihoods in the region, one of the country's poorest, with a population of 18.5 million.

"The main issue is our capacity to reconcile development, social justice and progress on the environment," said President Lula. "Precious ecosystems, such as the Caatinga, have been weakened by unsustainable pressure." Wood still provides nearly one-third of the region's energy, he noted.

Caatinga means "white forest" in the local tupi-guarani language, so named because many trees are without leaves for much of the year, sporting only silvery bark. It is home to many animals and up to 20 000 kinds of plants.

The forest covers 10 percent of the country's land area, and its wood fuels local steel, brick and tile industries and nearly three quarters of small and medium-sized rural homesteads. Excessive tree cutting is causing soil erosion that degrades lands and reduces water quality, substantially diminishing economic productivity and threatening plant and animal life.

The project, administered by UNDP, will develop a framework to guide conservation and sustainable use of forest resources for 160 communities and determine the most appropriate land use for different areas. It will also work with industries and communities to improve wood-fuelled ovens so they burn more efficiently and cleanly.

In addition, the initiative will help communities to integrate management of forest areas where wood is harvested and fruits, medicinal plants, oils and honey provide livelihoods, and offer incentives to set up protected areas.

"This is a unique opportunity to promote human development in one of Brazil's poorest regions through the sustainable use of the Caatinga's resources, while protecting one of the most threatened and globally important eco-regions," said UNDP Resident Representative Carlos Lopes.

The Global Environment Facility is providing US$4 million for the project. Co-financing worth US$23 million will come from the Government of Brazil, regional and national institutions, and other organizations, including FAO and the North-East Bank (BNE).

The project is a broad public-private partnership that includes a network of more than 600 grassroots organizations. It will help Brazil's progress towards attaining the Millennium Development Goals of reducing extreme poverty and promoting environmental sustainability.

For further information please contact Helen Negret, Regional Coordinator for UNDP/GEF at or Carlos Castro, UNDP Brazil at

6. Brazil: Government to create clear regulations for those who want to invest in sustainable forestry production

Source: Radiobras, 24 February 2004 (in Amazon News, 26.2.04)

At the end of March, the federal government will send to Congress the proposed law governing the Administration of Public Forests. The idea is to terminate the process of illegal occupation of Brazilian forests and inappropriate uses. According to the director of the National Forestry Program of the Ministry of the Environment, Tasso Azevedo, the federal government wants to create clear regulations that generate security for those who wish to invest in sustainable forestry production.

Azevedo explained that the proposed law will define the procedural norms for forestry concession contracts and the regulations governing those concessions. "Now, whoever wants to exploit an area will have to pay for the area and be in compliance with the criteria such so that it demonstrates sustainable use. One of the greatest problems in Amazonia is land ownership. 24% of land is privately-owned; 29% is protected - including Indigenous Territories and Conservation Units. The other 49% are public areas, returned lands or those in dispute, where deforestation, illegal occupations and illegal mining occur.

The project will define how to manage the pubic forests for production. This will occur in the transformation of Conservation Units into sustainable use areas, such as the Extractivist Reserves. The public forests could have a social use as is the case of forestry settlements as part of the Agrarian Reform and concessions for the private sector.

For the land concession to be granted some regulations such as the guarantee of forest conservation, the generation of wealth distributed in a democratic manner, the guarantee of carrying out an efficient and monitoring process are being considered.

The concession could permit the development of timber production, non-timber products and for services, such as tourism. Azevedo explains that this proposal is a measure to contain deforestation and to promote development in these areas.

7. Bangladesh: Local communities and ecotourism

Source: The Daily Star, 30 January 2004 (in Community Forestry E-News 2004.01)

The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has identified six major reasons for ecotourism investment in local communities:

* It is the largest growing sector in the world, therefore the potential for income is high.

* Increasing human populations and their demand on natural resources necessitate the development of these areas to generate sufficient profits to save remaining natural resources.

* Rapid loss of biodiversity warrants the establishment of biosphere reserves to protect what is left.

* In many countries, natural reserves belong to the government, and local communities living in these areas usually have no rights to the resources.

* Any ecotourism activity will affect local communities, so they should have a say in the planning processes.

* Income from ecotourism will increase employment opportunities for local people, thus raising their standard of living.

Bangladesh has many tourist attraction areas which could be destroyed without proper management and maintenance. The involvement of local people in developing ecotourism opportunities will help to conserve these areas, as well as their culture and traditions, at the same time increase their income.

For the full text, see

8. Cameroon: MINEF and other stakeholders recommend increased control

Source: Cameroon Tribune (Yaoundé), 22 March 2004

The contribution of the forestry sector to government's effort toward development and rational distribution of national resources has of late fallen short of desired level. This is one of the major observations made by authorities of the Ministry of the Environment and Forestry (MINEF) who have been meeting with stakeholders to identify what can be done to reverse the situation. Both partners resolved that the relatively poor contribution of the forestry sector is the consequence of insufficient human, material and financial resources attributed to forestry control activities and the follow up of forestry crime.

Following the balance sheet drawn within the framework of the Heavily Indebted Poor Country (HIPC) initiative's Structural Adjustment Credit (SAC-III), an institutional review in the forestry sector was carried out to reinforce provincial and divisional services of the Ministry of the Environment and Forestry. A plan of action to effectively put in place the review will set up a programme for the forest-environment sector.

The present discussions between the administration and partners in the sector is a logical build up to embracing the challenges of Cameroon's recent renewed engagement to beef up its exportation of timber and other non timber forestry products as a result of the sustainable management of the forest. It is hoped that this will be carried out through the new vision of work drawn up in the Forest- Environment Sector Programme (PSFE). The PSFE is a national sector by sector programme put up by government but which remains open to financing by donor organizations, contributions of civil society and non governmental organizations.

Control, as an organized activity, occupies an important place in the programme's implementation. It is against this backdrop that the Ministry of the Environment and Forestry has decided to clarify the roles and duties of different actors through the organization of a chain of controls, drawing up of procedures and methods of control as well as procedures for meting out sanctions. The control covers four different sections: timber forestry products; non-timber forestry products; wildlife and environment.

For full story, please see:

9. China: 64 new national forest parks approved

Source: China View, 19 January 2004 (in Community Forestry E-News 2004.01)

The State Forestry Administration (SFA) has approved 64 new national forest parks across the country to protect natural resources and boost tourism. Overall plans for the parks are required, and must be approved before any permanent construction project can start. The plans should also focus on appropriate development and sustainable utilization. The total number of forest parks stands at 1 540, of which 503 are national forest parks.

The first forest park was established in 1982 in Zhangjiajie in central Hunan Province. Since then, they have become popular tourist destinations, with visits increasing at an annual rate of 30 percent since 1990.

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10. Namibia: Torra Conservancy wins UNDP award

Source: Zimbabwe Standard (Harare), 21 March 2004

Namibia's Torra Conservancy has made history by becoming the first Southern African rural community to win the prestigious US$30 000 UNDP Equator Prize. The Equator Prize which was first introduced in August 2002 honours outstanding community projects that effectively reduce poverty through conversation and sustainable use of biodiversity-rich equatorial belt.

Torra Conservancy comprises the Damaraland Community, who were one of the first communities to form a community conservancy in Namibia in recognition of the need to protect wildlife and other natural resources on their land.

For full story, please see:

Related story:

11. Russian Far East: NTFP small business development project

From: Nikolay Shmatkov

Over the past three years the IUCN-CIS Forest Conservation Programme has been involved with a community economic development project focused on the Kamchatka Peninsula and Sakhalin Island. (This project is one component of the larger project "Building Partnerships for Forest Conservation and Management in Russia" funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and managed by IUCN-World Conservation Union.)

The activities in the Russian far east are aimed at assisting remote communities of the region to develop their non-timber forest product resources sustainably. With 29 active volcanoes and the largest surviving populations of wild salmon and brown bear, Kamchatka has a richly deserved reputation as a wild and relatively untouched land. Apart from the difficulties presented by living in a remote area with a harsh environment, many of Kamchatka's residents are facing new challenges brought on by the collapse of the Soviet regime. Since the early 1990s, communities on Kamchatka (and elsewhere in the country) have experienced economic decline made worse by the withdrawal of federal support to outlying regions and traditional resource use such as reindeer herding.

In our project, NTFPs are viewed as one part of a local sustainable livelihood strategy (including tourism, cultural activities, hunting, herding). We provide business and legal issues training, consultation on small business and community-based enterprise development, and support for sustainability and monitoring programmes. It is the hope of project participants that the successful development of these opportunities will decrease the pressure to move forward with potentially damaging resource exploitation activities, such as gold mining and oil extraction within or close to the World Heritage Sites.

The project is focusing on groups of people who have not normally had the chance to participate in small business or natural resource management - indigenous people and women. It is the intention of all involved that, over time, local community groups will take over production and marketing activities. Four family and cooperative NTFP-based businesses have already been started by native communities on Kamchatka with the assistance of the project. Started from scratch, these businesses are now marketing their products - so far these are herbal teas, dried wild berries and birch bark souvenirs within the Russian Federation and abroad. The Kamchatka Herbal Tea Community Association successfully fundraised for the new drying equipment.

About 400 people are involved as experts, trainees and participants of other project activities. We hope that the project will make a contribution to the development and implementation of the global approaches to sustainable community development and poverty alleviation. (Contributed by: By Nikolay Shmatkov, NTFP Component Coordinator, IUCN-CIS and Tim Brigham, NTFP Business Development Consultant, Canada.)

For more information, please contact:

Nikolay Shmatkov, NTFP Component Coordinator, IUCN-CIDA Project, IUCN-World Conservation Union, Office for Russia and CIS, 17 Marshal Vasilevski St, 123 182 Moscow, Russian Federation.

Fax: +7 95 4905818;

e-mail: or


Tim Brigham, NTFP Small Business Development Consultant, 3878 Cowichan Lake Road, Duncan, BC, Canada V9L 6K1.

Fax: +1 250 7483582;


12. Uganda: Honey exports to EU

Source: The Monitor (Kampala), 23 March 2004

Uganda will start exporting honey to the United Kingdom in October according to a honey expert. According to Ms Maria Odido, the chairperson of the Uganda National Apiculture Development Organisation (Tunado), the EU is expected to certify Uganda's honey by October 2004 in order to allow exports to start. "The International Organic Certifiers say that Uganda already conforms to 65 percent but we have not yet gone through the criteria of international control system for traceability. Once we meet this then we shall be able to export," said Odido.

She was speaking at a meeting with the Norwegian delegation interested in importing organic honey from Uganda at the Uganda Export Promotions Board offices on 18 March. She said that the Ministry of Agriculture and the Uganda National Bureau of Standards are working towards forming a Uganda National Honey Standard to conform to the EU requirements.

The certification clearance is to cost US$40,000, which has already been donated by the Shell Foundation (US$32,000) and the National Agricultural Advisory Services (US$5 000). The certification will involve classification of honey according to flavour, colour, and taste.

Some of the companies involved in the production of honey for export include RECO Industries (the oldest in the market), Kabarole Bee Association (which also manufactures wine from honey) and Bee Natural Products.

Most of Uganda's honey exports go to the regional market in Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Small quantities are indirectly exported to the UK by RECO.

Ms Ellen D. Gjeruldsen, an import adviser of the Federation of Norwegian Commercial and Service Enterprises (HSH), said that they are interested in the importation of ready products, which are organically certified.

Ms Florence Kata, executive director of Uganda Export Promotions Board, said that exporters needed help in the certification process of the naturally grown honey and other products. She warned exporters to be careful of fake certification bodies. "It is no longer about quantity alone but quality; double your efforts to meet the international standards," Kata said.

For full story, please see:

13. Uganda, Kenya in cross-border pact

Source: New Vision (Kampala), 23 March 2004

UGANDA and Kenya have agreed to a cross border programme to protect nature and improve the livelihoods of the communities around Mountain Elgon.

The World Conservation Union (IUCN) initiated the Mt. Elgon Regional Ecosystem Conservation Programme. Launching the programme, Prof. Edward Rugumayo, the Tourism Minister, said the project will help conserve nature and develop the people. Rugumayo said the programme would be undertaken by the districts sharing Mountain Elgon, and conservation and development partners under the auspices of the East African Community.

The head of the IUCN programmes in Uganda referred to Mountain Elgon as a water tower as it provided water flowing into Lakes; Victoria, Kyoga and Turkana in Kenya. He said the area is rich in biodiversity to protect.

For full story, please see:

14. Vietnam: Forest cover in northern mountains expected to expand 20 percent

Source: Vietnam Economy, 5 February 2004 (in Community Forestry E-News 2004.02)

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), forest cover in the northern mountains and midlands of Vietnam is expected to expand from 31 to 52 percent by 2010. The region now covers over 10 million hectares of land, of which forestland makes up some 31 percent, while bare hills occupy an estimated 40 percent.

To achieve the target, MARD has called for strict patrols over upper-reach forests, better regulation of water levels in the regional river and reservoir system, and expansion of forest areas in the lowland to produce industrial raw materials. Protection of biodiversity in nature reserves, development of farm economy and encouraging farmers to grow timber trees are other measures under consideration. The ministry is also looking into restoring and developing traditional craft villages specializing in forest product processing.

15. Zambia: Rampant deforestation worries Forest College

Source: The Times of Zambia (Ndola), 12 March 2004

Zambia Forestry College (ZFC) principal Sackson Siame has expressed worry at the rampant deforestation in the Mwekera Forest Reserve. He said it was sad that instead of people getting involved in the protection of the forest reserves, they were busy destroying the forests.

Mr Siame appealed to politicians to help in educating people about the importance of the forests and their effect on the rain pattern. He said people should be educated that forests play a vital role in the rain patterns which support agriculture in the area. He said that once the forest was completely destroyed by indiscriminate cutting of trees by charcoal burners, the area would not be able to support its agriculture. The other serious effect would be the drying up of rivers in the area.

Mr Siame called on the people in the area to look at this devastating effect before the forests were completely wiped out. He said that out of 50 000 ha of forest, only 25 000 ha of it remained undisturbed.

For full story, please see:

16. Zambia: OPPAZ stimulates honey exports

Source: The Times of Zambia (Ndola), 10 March 2004

Production of honey from the North-Western Province of Zambia has gone up with an estimated export crop of 400 tonnes involving 3 000 bark hive producers in the 2003/4 season. According to the Organic Producers and Association of Zambia (OPPAZ), the last few years have seen numerous successes in the organic field with some of the producers of honey being certified by the Soil Association of Zambia under the umbrella of the North-Western Bee keepers Association. Organic certification is carried out by Ecocert, a French certification body.

OPPAZ says that commercial agriculture has been producing certified organic vegetables for export and is now beginning to export essential oils using the out grower schemes. There is a growing interest in organically wild products such as manjeti (mongongo) nut oil, baobab oil and fruit, marula oil and mpundu (parinari curatellifolia) nut oil.

Organically certified wild harvest mushrooms have been exported from Mpongwe for a number of years, says OPPAZ.

For full story, please see:

17. Congo Basin Forest Partnership

Source: Earth Negotiations Bulletin , Linkages Update - 16 March 2004

The Congo Basin Forest Partnership - a free association of public and private partners - works to reduce poverty and improve the lives of the Congo Basin's people through new and existing regional institutions and programs by protecting the region's biodiversity and promoting good governance and the sustainable use and management of its forests and wildlife.

For more information, please visit their Web site:

18. EC takes steps toward establishing protected area network

Source: EC Press Release, 14 January 2004 in Earth Negotiations Bulletin []

The European Commission has approved a list of 959 nature sites in mountain regions within the EU in an effort to enhance protection of the areas and their endangered animal and plant species. The list covers sites in the Alps, the Pyrenees, the Apennines and the Fennoscandian mountains. This action is considered to be a step forward in the direction of establishing Natura 2000, the network of protected sites in the EU.

For full story please see:|0|RAPID&lg=EN

19. WWF survey reveals gaps in management of forest protected areas

Source: Info CENN , 10 February 2004

On 9 February 2004 the largest ever-global assessment of the management of forest-protected areas was released by WWF at the Conference of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

The survey shows that poaching, agricultural encroachment, illegal logging and over-harvesting of non-timber products are the main threats to forest protected areas.

Using a tracking tool developed over the past five years in partnership with the World Bank and the World Commission on Protected Areas, WWF scientists have been able to analyse the strengths and weaknesses of almost 200 forest protected areas in 34 countries worldwide - covering an area the size of Germany. (The 34 countries where management of forest protected areas has been analysed are: Argentina, Bhutan, Bolivia, Brazil, Cambodia, Camroon, China, Cote d'Ivoire, Czech Republic, Finland, Georgia, Ghana, Greece, India, Indonesia, Italy, Kazakhstan, Lao PDR, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Russian Federation, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Vietnam.)

The results show that while performance on issues such as the establishment, demarcation and resource inventories of protected areas is acceptable, relations with local communities and indigenous people, planning and monitoring, law enforcement and lack of funding are recurrent problems in the surveyed areas.

In the light of this survey, WWF calls on the CBD and its parties to recognize and respect the rights of local communities and indigenous people; substantially increase the funding needed to effectively manage protected areas; acknowledge and urgently address the key threats of poaching, encroachment and logging; recognize the fundamental role of rangers and environmental educators; and assess the management effectiveness of at least 30 percent of protected areas in each signatory country by 2010.

Furthermore, WWF is calling on the CBD to achieve effective protection of at least 10 percent of each ecological region by the same timeline.

"The future of the world's biological richness relies very much on a strong network of protected areas," added WWF's Leonardo Lacerda. "However, protected areas will only work if they are really protected, which is currently not always the case. We are committed to tracking progress of these protected areas every two years, and we invite all countries to follow suit: evaluate and periodically monitor their system of protected areas."

For more information, please contact:

Leonardo Lacerda, WWF Forests for Life Programme,

Tel.: +41 79 703 19 52 (mobile)


Olivier van Bogaert, WWF International Press Office,

Tel.: +41 79 477 35 72 (mobile)

20. World Bank: Estimating poverty

Source: World Bank Weekly Web Update, 9 February 2004 (in Community Forestry E-News 2004.02)

When estimating worldwide poverty, the Bank uses reference lines set at US$1 and US$2 per day of standard purchasing power. In 1999, the latest year for which figures are available, an estimated 1.2 billion people had consumption levels below US$1 a day - 23 percent of the population of the developing world - and 2.8 billion lived on less than US$2 a day. When analysing poverty in particular countries, the Bank uses poverty line(s) based on norms for that society. Current figures are lower than earlier estimates, indicating some progress, but remain high in terms of human suffering.


21. New Report on NTFPs

From: Eric Jones, IFCAE

New Report: The Relationship between Nontimber Forest Product Management and Biodiversity in the United States. March 2004. Eric T. Jones, Rebecca J. McLain, Kathryn A. Lynch. Institute for Culture and Ecology.

Abstract: Nontimber forest products (NTFP) in the United States are harvested for commercial and non-commercial purposes and include thousands of wild or semi-wild species or parts of species used for medicines, foods, decorations, fragrances, containers, dyes, fuel, shelter, art, ceremonial purposes, and more. Despite the known and substantial economic value of a few individual NTFPs, and the unknown, but likely high economic value of NTFPs in aggregate, historically managers have not included them as important factors in forest management. Not only do NTFPs comprise a significant part of the biological diversity of forest ecosystems, but given the lack of formal NTFP research, the many people who harvest NTFPs part or fulltime have the most knowledge about them. Consequently, efforts to conserve biodiversity are unlikely to succeed unless knowledge about NTFPs, and the effects on them of various forest management activities such as timber removal, grazing, prescribed burning, and NTFP harvesting practices, becomes an integral part of forest management.

This research project attempts to address these issues through achieving two objectives: 1) to advance understanding of the role and impact of NTFP management in forest ecosystem sustainability and biodiversity; and 2) to support the ability of U.S. forest managers to assess NTFP sustainability. We developed five interrelated components to meet these objectives.

The first component is an online species database expanded from 857 to 1 343 entries. The database serves as an initial tool for identifying NTFP species that currently or formerly existed in their region and that can potentially be incorporated into planning for biodiversity conservation, forest restoration, cultural use patterns, and sustainable economic development.

The second component is an online bibliographic database expanded from 1 468 to over 2 600 entries. The database aids in identifying NTFP references of books, journals, and gray literature. A large portion of the entries are annotated. The academic publications included in the database are drawn more heavily from the international NTFP arena, which is where the majority of NTFP research has been done thus far.

The third component is a national survey of Forest Service Ranger District employees and state forest managers for the purpose of examining NTFP management in relation to biodiversity. The surveys include several questions specifically addressing inventory and monitoring activities.

The fourth component is ethnographic fieldwork throughout the lower 48 United States that entailed driving over 37 000 miles to meet harvesters and other stakeholders in their communities. The fieldwork included formal and informal interviews and participant observation with hundreds of NTFP harvesters and other stakeholders including land managers, scientists, Native Americans, commercial businesses, and environmental groups.

The fifth component is a series of four all-day multi-stakeholder workshops and a three-day retreat of the seven member project team held to discuss the possibilities for inventory and monitoring programs involving NTFP harvesters. The results of these meetings including rationale, harvester incentives, barriers, case studies, recommendations, and steps for creating participatory inventory and monitoring programs are incorporated into a companion document to this report. Funded by the National Commission on Science for Sustainable Forestry.

22. IUCN and UNDP launch joint publication on biodiversity and millennium development goals

Source: IUCN, 19 February 2004 (in Info CENN, 20.2.04)

How can biodiversity help eradicate poverty, reduce child mortality and combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases? Some answers to these questions may well be found in the joint IUCN-UNDP publication Biodiversity and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) released on 18 February 2004 at the 7th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

"The publication marks an important milestone in our understanding of the need to mainstream biodiversity into the MDGs and the contribution that biodiversity makes to poverty reduction," said Balakrisna Pisupati, Head of the IUCN's Asia Regional Biodiversity Program, who co-authored the publication with the Emilie Warner of the IUCN Regional Program for Asia. "It also reflects the need to create synergies between conservation and development at all levels," added Pisupati.

Biodiversity and the Millennium Development Goals is available on the following address:

23. Which biodiversity?

Source: Polex Listserv (CIFOR), 11 February 2004

This week, thousands of experts have gathered at the Seventh Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Kuala Lumpur to find ways to conserve biodiversity and to share the benefits equitably. Usually much of the attention in such discussions goes either to animals that are physically attractive or to the genetic resources used by crop-breeders and drug companies. The plants and animals that villagers use for food, medicine, fuelwood, rituals, and other uses often get neglected.

That is not just simply unjust, it's downright unwise. If you don't listen to local peoples' concerns how can you expect them to support conservation?

Doug Sheil from CIFOR leads a team that is developing new ways for conservation planners to take into account local peoples' needs. "Local People's Priorities for Biodiversity: Examples from Forests of Indonesian Borneo" provides an example of this from the district of Malinau. There the team worked closely with the families from seven communities to map out which species are most important to them, where they are located, and what needs to be done to protect them.

Hunting remains the main source of animal products for these villagers, particularly in remote places. The villagers prefer to hunt wild boar, but logging has driven away many of the boars, forcing people to hunt less-preferred protected species such as monkeys. While logging drives the boars away, small rice and cassava fields actually attract them. Salt springs and abandoned villages with many fruit trees also attract a lot of animals people want.

Current Indonesian regulations encourage loggers to slash all the undergrowth and climbers for five years after logging to get rid of "weeds". Unfortunately, many of those "weeds" are actually plants that local people need. Similarly, loggers are usually told to drive their heavy machinery along the ridge tops to avoid erosion, but that is exactly where the sago palms grow that villagers eat when times are hard. Logging near rivers often kills the river carp that people are used to fishing because those carp eat the fruits of the trees that loggers harvest and can only survive in clear water.

Malinau's villagers are particularly interested in conserving forests near gravesites and limestone formations where they harvest bird nests. As it turns out, the latter also are rich in endemic species that interest biologists.

Focusing on these sorts of issues leads you to a partially different biodiversity agenda than just worrying about the big animals for the zoos or finding the cure for cancer. Hopefully that agenda won't be forgotten this week in Kuala Lumpur.

To request a free electronic copy of this paper you can write to Indah Susilanasari at:

To send comments or queries to the authors you can write to Doug Sheil at:

A full explanation of the methodology can be downloaded at:

24. World Bank/PROFOR - New publication series on Changes in Forest Management in Transition

Source: Caucasus Environmental NGO Network (CENN) Regional Daily Digest,

We are pleased to present the first publication in a new thematic series - Changes in Forest Management in Transition Economies. The series was launched in 2003 with support from the multidonor Program on Forests (PROFOR) in response to an increased interest from government officials, policy-makers and practitioners in the forest sector of the countries with transition economies in exchanging experiences and lessons from recent and ongoing changes in the national and local management of this globally important economic and environmental resource.

Each publication will focus on one or more critical issues in forest sector reforms. The materials used in these publications are first presented and discussed in relevant international workshops with participation of key stakeholders.

The topic of the first publication is Institutional Changes in Forest Management based on the results of an international workshop held in Moscow in February 2003. It can be downloaded from:

Three other publications are already under preparation (on the basis of respective workshops held in Pushkino and Khabarovsk): Problems and Opportunities in Forest Concession Development; New Approaches to Fire Management at an Ecoregional Level; and Training Needs in the Forest Sector Reforms. Topics being considered in 2004-2005 also include public enterprises for forest management, forest certification, illegal forest activities, financing of forest administration, and management of high conservation value forests. Publications in the series will also be available from:

The series is published in English and Russian and distributed free of charge to key national, regional and international forest-related organizations.

We welcome your comments on the format of the series, ideas for future topics, and suggestions for organizations to be included in our mailing list. Please send your feedback by e-mail to Ms. Marina Smetanina at: or Ms. Laura Ivers at:

For more information, please contact: Andrey V. Kushlin, Ph.D., Senior Forestry Specialist, The World Bank, ECSSD


25. CD-Rom: Reference Guide on Sustainable Forestry and Biodiversity Management

From: J.B. Maas, Tropenbos International, The Netherlands (

This CD is the result of a new collaboration between SNV (Netherlands Development Organization) and Tropenbos International (TBI). Over the years, TBI has generated a considerable amount of (scientific) information (over 700 books, articles and reports have been published).

With this CD, TBI together with SNV aims to make information accessible to those working with tropical forests who are without access to libraries and Internet connection.

For more information, please contact:

Topenbos International
PO Box 232
6700 AE Wageningen
The Netherlands

26. Other publications of interest

From: FAO's NWFP Programme

Alaska Boreal Forest Council. 2003. Proceedings: Hidden Forest Values. The First Alaska-wide Nontimber Forest Products Conference and Tour. US Department of Agriculture. General Technical Report PNW-GTR-579.

Balmford, A., et al. 2003. Measuring the changing state of nature. TREE 18(7):326-330

Bubb, P., May, I., Miles, L., Sayer, J. 2004. Cloud Forest Agenda. UNEP-WCMC, Cambridge, UK.

This six-chapter text offers the first mapping of the extent and importance of cloud forests. It is a project of the Mountain Cloud Forest Initiative, comprising UNEP, the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre, the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme and International Hydrological Programme (IHP), and ICUN's Commission on Ecosystem Management. The report notes that the Earth's "cloud forests" - unique mountain habitats that supply water to millions of people - are at risk from climate change and a host of other threats, according to a new report. The forests, which are found mostly in Asia and Latin America, also host thousands of rare species of flora and fauna and are considered critical to the livelihoods of millions of people in the developing world. The report calls for improved monitoring and conservation of cloud forests and highlights the need for local and national organizations to take a leading role as champions of cloud forests.

Online at:

Dijk, J.F.W. van, Onguene, N.A. and Kuyper, Th. W. 2003. Knowledge and utilization of edible mushrooms by local populations of the rain forest of South Cameroon. Ambio 32(1): 19-23.

Embaye, K. 2003. Ecological aspects and resource management of bamboo forests in Ethiopia. In: Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae. Silvestria (Sweden). 1401-6230, no. 73, no. 273 / Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet, Alnarp (Sweden). Inst. foer Lantskapsplanering.

FAO. 2003. Biodiversity and the Ecosystem Approach in Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. Rome, Italy. ISBN 92-5.104917-3.

Guedje N.M., Lejoly J., Nkongmeneck B.A., Jonkers W.B.J. 2003. Population dynamics of Garcinia lucida (Clusiaceae) in Cameroonian Atlantic forests. Forest Ecol. Manag. Vol 177/1-3 : 231-241.

Gullison, R.E. 2003. Does forest certification conserve biodiversity? Oryx 37(2):153-165. (Abstract)

Hachfield, Berit. 2003. Ecology and utilisation of Harpagophytum procumbens (Devil's Claw) in Southern Africa. Federal Agency for Nature Conservation. Bonn, Germany. ISBN 3-7843-3842-9.

Medicinal plants are playing an increasing role on the plant conservation agenda. It is widely recognized that many plant species are suffering from over-utilization. This study analyses the ecology, utilization and the population status of Devil's Claw (Harpagophytum procumbens), a medicinal plant in Southern Africa which is traded internationally in significant volumes.

Hawksworth, D.L. 2003. Monitoring and safeguarding fungal resources worldwide: the need for an international collaborative MycoAction Plan. Fungal Divers. 13:29-45.

Lapham, Nicholas and Livermore, Rebecca. 2003. Striking a Balance: Ensuring Conservation's Place on the International Biodiversity Assistance Agenda. Conservation International, Washington, DC, USA

López, Citlalli and Shanley.Patricia (eds.) 2004. Riches of the forest: Food, spices, crafts and resins of Asia. Center for International Forestry Research, Bogor, Indonesia.

ISBN 979-3361-18-2.

The richness of Asia's forests is reflected in the manifold products derived from these forests for human use. To serve as a first introduction to this plethora of products is the primary objective of the book.

The report covers: the key role which non-timber forest products (NTFPs) play in forest dependent communities; the organization of the trade and benefit sharing through the trade chain; the sustainable (or unsustainable) management of resources and the link with forest conservation.

Download document:

Roy, P.S. 2003. Biodiversity conservation - perspective from space. Natl. Acad. Sci. Lett. 26(7-8):169-184.

Sanderson, S.E., and Redford, K.H. 2003. Contested relationships between biodiversity conservation and poverty alleviation. Oryx 37(4):389-390.

Thibault, M., and Blaney, S. 2003. The oil industry as an underlying factor in the bushmeat crisis in central Africa. Conserv. Biol. 17(6):1807-1813.

Wardle, Philip, et al. eds. 2003. World forests, society and environment - Executive Summary. Tokyo, Japan: The United Nations University. 53 p.

Zagt, R., Ek, R. and Raes, N. 2003. Logging effects on liana diversity and abundance in Central Guyana. Tropenbos-Guyana Reports 2003-1. Tropenbos-Guyana, Wageningen, the Netherlands.

27. Web sites and e-zines

From: FAO's NWFP Programme

A global overview of forest protected areas inscribed on the World Heritage List -

ALAS organization (Alianza para las Areas Silverstres -Wild Areas Association)

A new web page aimed at all people interested in birds, animals, plants and wild areas of Nicaragua.


The Federation of Community Forestry Users in Nepal (FECOFUN) has recently launched its website.

Forest Health

Natura Coir Ply

Resource Africa - Maps and Imaging -


From: FAO's NWFP Programme

20th Session of Asia-Pacific Forestry Commission

19-23 April 2004

Nadi, Fiji

The Asia-Pacific Forestry Commission (APFC) meets in general session every two years, providing member countries and other interested organizations an opportunity to assess the successes and challenges in forestry in Asia and the Pacific, and to develop programs for regional cooperation.

For more information, please contact:

Patrick Durst, Senior Forestry Officer, FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, 39 Phra Atit Road, Bangkok 10200, Thailand,
Tel: 66-2-697-4139;
Fax: 66-2-697-4445,

Regional Training/Workshop on Urban and Peri-urban Agriculture

25-30 April 2004

Kathmandu, Nepal

Organized by the Himalayan Resources Institute, Nepal in collaboration with the Center for Built Environment, India and the International Water Management Institute, India

For more information, please contact:

Ram Bhandari
Coordinator, Regional Training/Workshop on Urban and Peri-urban Agriculture
President, Himalayan Resources Institute (HIRI)
GPO Box: 13880,
New Baneshwor, Kathmandu, Nepal

1st International Workshop on Forest and Environmental Information and Decision Support Systems

30 August-3 September 2004

Zaragoza, Spain

This workshop focuses on modern technology for the design and construction of Information and Decision Support Systems for Forestry and the Environmental Sciences.

Amongst the most important requirements of Forestry and Environmental Management, are : (i) the need for monitoring information on Damage and Disturbances, including Fire (ii) reliable information on diversity to aid in efforts to conserve Biological, Landscape and Social Diversity which is associated with forests and the environment, and (iii) accurate forest inventory data, often remotely sensed, which may be used to guide sustainable management of natural resources for the effective production of timber and NTFPs.

World Herbo- Bamboo Expo - 2005

12-15 January 2005

Bhopal M.P. India

Topics to be discussed include: Tribal Development through commercialization of Medicinal Plant Biodiversity. Drug development & drug industry & GLP & GMP; Innovative Bamboo Products, Bio-energy, bio-foods, Bio-medicines, prospective for the people and the environment; and the role of Ayurveda in AIDS.

For more information, please contact:

Dr. R. Sugandhi,


32. Request for information - economic data on NWFP

From: Catherine L. Craig

In many forests there may be multiple types of NWFP's that could be sustainably harvested. For example, honey production, butterfly farming and silk farming are three insect products whose that could be developed in the same site on a sustainable basis. It may be, however, that it is more expensive to set-up silk moth farming than butterfly farming. Nevertheless, the market for silk textiles is likely to be larger than that for butterfly pupae and perhaps for honey as well.

I would like to do an economic analysis of the cost effectiveness for different income-generating projects whose goal is poverty alleviation through conservation. I would like to compare the set-up costs, the cost to the farmer produce the product on a sustainable basis and the export value of the product.

Can you direct me to a database where I would be able to find these economic data?

33. Request for information: training in NWFP

From: P. Mallikarjuna

I am the Director of the Andhra Pradesh Forest Academy in Hyderabad, India. As part of capacity building measures for our practicing foresters, I would like to send some of our officers to undergo training in NWFP. We prefer short duration courses spanning about one to three months. Would you kindly suggest some reputed organizations for this training?


34. FAO's Forestry Branch Library

From: Vanda Ferreira dos Santos, Librarian,

The Forestry Branch Library (FOBL), a branch of the FAO David Lubin Memorial Library, provides FAO personnel and external users with timely and accurate information about forestry and related areas. It houses more than 3 500 books and over 600 current periodical titles, yearbooks and other serial titles on forestry and related areas. It also has a large collection of "grey literature" - including documentation on FAO forestry projects and papers and reports from various FAO meetings - much of which is not readily available anywhere else. Additional forest-related publications, including the special collections on forestry meetings, which include World Forestry Congresses since 1985, are accessible on request. The library provides multilingual service (English, French, Spanish, Italian) including reference and information assistance, bibliographic searches, photocopies and through the David Lubin Memorial Library, interlibrary loan services are provided.

For more information, please contact:

Ms Vanda Ferreira dos Santos
FAO - Forestry Library
00100 Rome, Italy
Tel. + 39 0657054161
Fax. +39 0657055137


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last updated:  Monday, August 24, 2009