Home  ||  Contact Us  
VASUNDHARA - Democratising Natural Resources Governance

Publications & Media
Get Involved
Livelihoods from Forests:

Forest resources are critical for livelihood of large number of poor and marginalised sections in India. The role of forests in the livelihoods of the poor is now a well- established fact. The importance of Non Timber Forest Produces (NTFPs) also known as Minor Forest Produces (MFPs), including medicinal plants, in sustaining rural livelihoods, contributing to rural poverty alleviation, biodiversity conservation and facilitating rural economic growth is well known. In India alone, around 275 million people living in forested pockets significantly depend on forest products, specifically NTFPs/MFPs for food, shelter, medicine, cash income etc. The resource sustains millions by providing an alternate source of food and income for at least 6-8 months in terms of subsistence and cash income, that too in the agricultural lean period. NTFPs have attracted the Global attention in recent years due to its significant role in poverty alleviation, and industrial growth.  

Although for many households the magnitude of cash income generated is low, the income availability during critical periods is seen to be crucial. In India, forest and forest products contribute an income equivalent of US$ 2.7 billion per year and absorb 55% of the total employment in the forestry sector. Moreover, 50% of forest revenues and 70% of forest based export income come from MFPs (Chauhan et al., 2008). Its provide 50% of the household income for approximately one-third of India's rural population. The EXIM Bank estimates that the international market for medicinal plants is about US$ 70 billion per year, which is growing at a rate of 7% annually, (Ministry of Environment & Forest, 2006). As per the projections of WHO, the demand for medicinal plants is likely to increase to more than US $5 trillion by 2050. In India, trade in medicinal plants is estimated to be approximately US $1 billion per year. As per World Bank statistics, the size of the herbal market in India is of the order of Rs. 5000 crore. This demand of NTFP is being catered by the primary collectors residing in around 1.3 lakh of forest fringe villages in the country in which tribal populations have historically used NTFPs either to meet subsistence needs or to generate some household income.  


Democracy, Equity, Social Justice and Ethical Development

Site Map     Feedback    Disclaimer      Quick Links
             copyright © vasundharaorissa.com