Growing the world’s ginseng supply
Ginseng is used for a variety of purposes around the world, such as medicinal applications, energy drinks and other food uses. Ginseng is an important industry for Wisconsin, as the state produces about 95 percent of ginseng grown in the U.S. The Ginseng Board of Wisconsin was founded in 1986 as a nonprofit organization to represent the interests of the nearly 200 ginseng growers in the state.
The board helps Wisconsin growers navigate challenges including endangered species list permitting, extended planting timeline planning, harvesting challenges, and market expansion both domestically and internationally.
Tapping into worldwide ginseng demand
Chinese markets have evolved into the ginseng board’s number-one priority for international markets—due in large part to the country’s substantial use of the plant for medicinal and food purposes, and consequent growing demand as its population grows. To build stronger ties and lasting relationships with new distributors and customers, the board sent representatives on a global trade venture to China in January 2016. While there, they met with numerous companies interested in utilizing Wisconsin ginseng. These meetings were prearranged with guidance from the WEDC’s international business development team and WEDC’s global network of trade representatives in 82 countries worldwide (including China). The trade venture led to new partnerships and ongoing relationships with many of the companies they met.