Poverty and Livelihood Impacts of a Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Project in India and Nepal: An Assessment

  • Rasul G
  • Choudhary D
  • Pandit B
 et al. 
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Abstract

A medicinal and aromatic plants (MAPs) project was implemented in Nepal
and parts of India from 2005 to 2009 by the International Centre for
Integrated Mountain Development to enhance the livelihood options and
reduce the poverty of poor rural households. The present study assesses
the impact of the project on poverty and livelihood security using
quantitative and qualitative data collected in a household survey, focus
group discussions, and interviews with key informants. The project
improved the skills and knowledge of producers and collectors MAPs in
production, management, processing, and marketing, as well as their
negotiating power with traders. This helped increase household income
and alleviate poverty. However, the project's impact varied across
project sites. While an impact was quite visible in Nepal and
Chhattisgarh, India, it was less visible in Himachal Pradesh, India.
Factors responsible for the different levels of impact are analyzed, and
lessons are drawn for future programs and projects. The findings suggest
that locally available and commercially valuable natural resources,
including MAPs, have the potential to improve the livelihoods of rural
mountain people.

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Authors

  • Golam Rasul

  • Dyutiman Choudhary

  • Bishnu Hari Pandit

  • Michael Kollmair

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