The world ginseng market and the ginseng (Korea)

  • Baeg, In-Ho (Korea Ginseng Corporation Research Institute, Korea Ginseng Corporation) ;
  • So, Seung-Ho (Korea Ginseng Corporation Research Institute, Korea Ginseng Corporation)
  • Received : 2011.12.20
  • Accepted : 2012.05.31
  • Published : 2013.01.15


Ginseng is being distributed in 35 countries around the world and there are differences by each country in the distribution volume and amount. However, since there is no accurate statistics on production and distribution amount by each country, it is very difficult to predict the world ginseng market. Ginseng trading companies and governments are in desperate need of comprehensive data that shows the world ginseng market status for sales and marketing. For that reason, this study will look into the approximate size of the world ginseng market based on recent ginseng distribution amount by each country and production by major ginseng producing nations. In addition, the review sets an opportunity to check the status of ginseng (Korea) in the world and presents future direction by examining recent history of ginseng development in Korea, which is one of the world's largest ginseng distributers. Since ginseng is cultivated in limited areas due to its growth characteristics, ginseng distributing countries can be divided based on whether they grow it domestically or not. In general, four countries including South Korea, China, Canada, and the US are the biggest producers and their total production of fresh ginseng is approximately 79,769 tons which is more than 99% of 80,080 tons, the total ginseng production around the world. Ginseng is distributed to different countries in various forms such as fresh ginseng, dried ginseng, boiled and dried ginseng (Taekuksam), red ginseng and the related products, etc. and is consumed as food, dietary supplements, functional food, medical supplies, etc. Also, the world ginseng market including ginseng root and the processed products, is estimated to be worth $2,084 million. In particular, the size of the Korean market is $1,140 million which makes Korea the largest distributer in the world. Since the interests in alternative medicine and healthy food is increasing globally, the consumer market of ginseng with many features and the processed products are expected to expand continuously.


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