Selecting Ginseng

Types Of Ginseng

Asian ginseng (Panax Ginseng Asiatic) and North American ginseng (Panax Quinguefaliam) differ in their chemical composition and thus have distinct biological effects. North American ginseng is classified into 3 main categories: North American Cultivated Ginseng; Transplanted or woods grown Ginseng; and Wild Ginseng.

North American Cultivated Ginseng - is grown in farms, where the growing condition is artificially sustained. For example, protective roof is erected to block out 75% of the sunlight; periodic removal weeds and pests are all part of the cultivation process. Cultivated Ginseng usually takes 3 to 5 years to reach maturity. Once harvested, the land cannot be used for growing ginseng again. Transplanted or woods grown Ginseng - is cultivated seeds planted into woods and left to grow on its own. Wild Ginseng - is grown in the wild without any human involvement. Due to massive harvesting, Wild Ginseng is becoming increasingly rare. Ginseng in each of these categories is further divided into 4 types.



How To Select Ginseng?

By Age

The age of the ginseng is determined by the number of nodes or rings in the head area of the ginseng. The age of the ginseng increases as the number of nodes or rings increase.

By Root Condition and General Appearance

Discolouration in the root area of the ginseng (see first picture on the left) indicates sick roots and an inferior quality ginseng. A healthy or good quality ginseng would not have any discolouration in the root area (see picture in the middle). The general appearance (i.e. the skin condition) of the ginseng is not an indicator of health. Ginseng with scratched skin but no root discolouration (see picture on the right) is still a healthy ginseng.

Bad Roots-
Ring is discoloured
 Good Roots-
Ring is discoloured
 Scratched Skin but Healthy
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Not Genuine North American Ginseng

Molded Root-
Created from a Mold
Precut Head Ontario Ginseng-
Natural Head
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