• Communities in the Himalayas are dependent upon natural resources and extract plants from nature to meet their health and economic demands
• Prized and endangered species of genus such as Swertia (Chirayita), Picrorhiza (Kutki), Taxus (Rakhal) and Aconitum (Atish) were domesticated successfully with active involvement of organized and trained women groups. Cultivation of one Chirayita (Swertia cordata) species is explained keeping in view the importance to address prevalent human ailment ranging from immunity enhancement, liver tonic to blood sugar level maintenance (Diabetes) in a cost effective way.
Innovation & Novelty:
Chirayita crop at harvesting stage
• Developed complete package from agro-technique to value addition of one wild species of Chirayita (Swertia cordata) for health and economic prosperity of mountain people.
• Quality profile and characterization as per Indian ayurvedic pharmacopeia standards for Chirayita
• Development of herbal Chirayita infusion/tea undertaken to address primary health care needs of mountain communities.
• Installed customized machine for making herbal Chirayita sachet with SEED-DST core support .
Dried Chirayita Storage
• Agro-technique for producing Swertia cordata
crop from seeds in 18 months duration in farmers
fields was standardized.
• Network of farmers (women) through orientation, capacity building and training was established.
• Farmer’s produce was collectively harvested and pooled for post harvest management and marketing.
• Uncertainty of marketing bulk raw drug prompted for value addition to ensure economic returns to the
cultivators and quality product to the consumers.
• Dried whole plant at flowering stage was fine chopped and made into 5g sachet for easy and measured dose delivery.
• Establishment of required infrastructure and adoption of legal procedures for production and marketing under AYUSH System of medicine is in process.
Impact Outreach and Adoption :
• 10000 Kg dried material was produced out of which only 2500 Kg could be marketed. This discouraged the cultivators and further emphasized need for value addition,
• Machine for making Chirayita herbal sachet was installed to ensure farmers return and revive the cultivation cluster in recent years.
• Network of more than 1000 farmers is taking up cultivation with renewed zeal to produce this important herb in their fields with buy back arrangement.
• Chirayita cultivation is also an alternate to the food crops in wild animal infested areas.
• Simultaneously cultivation of this species has revived the traditional wisdom of using this plant in the primary health care.
Herbal Chirayita Sachet :
Chirayita Sachet Making Machine
Shri Chander Mohan/Dr. Sunil K. Agarwal
• In traditional use decoction/infusion of Chirayita was main remedy for fever, liver problems and control of blood sugar level (Diabetes) .
• Chirayita infusion in empty stomach in the morning along with prescribed allopathic medicines was reported to reduce fasting blood sugar levels as per feedback from the local inhabitants and traditional healers.
• Chirayita is also reported to promotes secretion of insulin, cures hepatitis B, high blood pressure, chronic fever, jaundice, constipation, enhances body immunity and in a recent study cures dengue as well.
• It provides good amounts of Ca, K, Fe, Cu and Zn.