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Offering a New Healthy Food, Functional Ginseng Sprouts Appear in the Global Market

Ginseng sprouts are drawing attention as a functional food whose components can protect liver, inhibits tumors, and suppress platelet aggregation. Goryeo Sammuruji Sprouting Ginseng Farming Co-op, in partnership with Hwangryong Agricultural Co-operative, is striving to open exports of ginseng sprouts worldwide. At this initial stage, it is sending product samples to the US, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, and the UAE.

Popular Thanks to Abundance of Saponin
Ginseng sprouts were commercialized by Goryeo Sammuruji Sprouting Ginseng Farming Co-op. Its 35 farming households create an appropriate environment for ginseng’s growth in pots in greenhouses, planting ginseng rootlets, and applying hydroponics in tending for the sprouts for about two months. Ginseng sprouts, of which not only leaf and stem but also roots can be eaten in vegetable wraps and other dishes, are enjoying an increasing popularity in Korea and overseas.

Co-op CEO Lim Seon-ho said, “The 35 households of professional farmers in this co-op cultivate ginseng sprouts as an eco-friendly product. Grown without pesticides, ginseng sprouts can be eaten in their entirety.” He added, “Leaves of ginseng sprouts contain 10 times the amount of saponin in its root.”

Samples of ginseng sprouts the Hwangryong Agricultural Cooperative sent to the US, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, and the UAE have received an explosive reaction. It is anticipated that the current trial export worth KRW 10 million will sharply increase to KRW 1 billion next year when exports gets into full gear.

Best Quality through Thorough Safety Management
Goryeo Sammuruji Sprouting Ginseng Farming Co-op ensures the safety of ginseng rootlets by testing them for residual pesticides at the time of purchase. Furthermore, the sprouts are inspected against some 300 safety-related criteria before consignment. This is done in preparation for safety inspections at the exporting stage and to build an image of the best-quality ginseng sprouts in the import markets.

The co-op has set up its own screening and processing systems. With top-notch facilities, it has generated a highly hygienic work environment. Accurate classification and management of different quality levels is performed by invited experts. Aspiring to create a luxurious image for its product, the co-op has registered a trademark for its independent brand, “Sammuruji,” which stands for “ginseng grown in clean soil.” As the awareness of the health benefits of ginseng sprouts is growing, the co-op is receiving inquiries from around the world. Buyers from two dozen countries, including the US and Canada, have pre-ordered the product.

Cultivating Ginseng Sprouts into a Business Worth Billions of Won
Lim emphasizes, “Vegetable sprouts are not only highly effective in preventing cancers, diabetes, reducing high blood pressure and raising immunity but are also very convenient for use in cooking.” He adds, “In hot climates, such as in countries of Southeast Asia and the Middle East, eating sprout wraps can help maintain homeostasis to beat the heat, so ginseng sprouts are rapidly becoming popular there.”

These days, the Rural Development Administration (RDA) of the Korean government is trying to boost the competitive power of ginseng sprouts by designating it as a promising export product and increasing the technological and policy support. It also organizes venues for negotiations with foreign buyers and hosts promotional fairs.

Goryeo Sammuruji Sprouting Ginseng Farming Co-op plans to grow the ginseng sprout business over the next three years into an enterprise worth over KRW 5 billion. It will make efforts to achieve stable exports of the sprouts and create high value, processed products such as powder that can be used to make noodles and beverages.

Goryeo Sammuruji Sprouting Ginseng Farming Cop.
·Tel : +82-61-395-2058
·Fax : +82-61-393-2092
·Email: 55dh@hanmail.net

Lee Young Ju  leejy@agrinet.co.kr

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