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Red Ginseng – the Miracle Herb

The trade winds never tire, and the gentle waves of the South Seas have taken us this time to the shores of an ancient and mysterious land, in search of a source of the famed miracle herb - Korean Red Ginseng.

It took many exciting field trips and wonderful conversations with the local growers and specialists in the Geumsan Mountain region of South Korea. (Yes, that was the pre-Covid time...)

At long last, we have found what we were looking for - a reliable source of organic, premium quality 5-year old herb!

The efficacy of red ginseng has been found in various scientific studies. The Ministry of Food and Drug Administration, a Korean government agency, has recognized the functional effects of red ginseng in improving immunity and removing fatigue.

Red ginseng has been shown to be particularly effective in preventing colds, including flu. In 2004, Dr. Hitoshi Kaneko of Nagoya University, Japan, and his team of researchers demonstrated the mysterious efficacy of red ginseng by conducting a study on about 12,000 patients. The results of his study showed that only 1.4 percent of those who ate red ginseng caught a cold, but 4.9 percent of those who did not eat red ginseng went down with a cold. Those who ate red ginseng recovered quickly even when they caught a cold.

Other studies found that red ginseng intake hinders the outbreak of acute respiratory diseases and makes an improvement in their symptoms. According to a paper published in 2012 by Prof. Lee Chang-seop of the Jeonbuk National University Medical School, a study of about 100 adults on the preventive effects of red ginseng on acute respiratory diseases showed that red ginseng reduced the outbreak of respiratory diseases about 50 percent and improved symptoms such as coughing and stuffy noses.

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In addition, a 2012 study by Kang Sang-moo, a professor of immunology at Georgia State University in the United States, compared survival rates of those infected with the new flu virus. The results of the study showed that a mix of a vaccine and red ginseng resulted in a 100 percent survival rate, but using a vaccine alone showed a survival rate of 60 percent among humans and 40 percent among mice. Red ginseng has been proved to boost the immune system, especially against viruses.

Geumsan Traditional Ginseng Agricultural System, Republic of Korea


Geumsan traditional ginseng agricultural system is a very important agricultural heritage. It represents the culture, long history and traditions of Korea. In addition, Korean Ginseng is considered a noble crop that, beyond being merely a specialty Korean product, has been inherited as one of the spiritual heritages of the nation.

Ginseng cultivation areas form a single agricultural system incorporating all of the land's elements including the surrounding forests, farm lands, villages, and rivers. The surrounding forests provide natural shade, as well as micro climate control, through lowering the temperature via the evaporation process of the vegetation within the forest. Moreover, rivers and streams improve the wind circulation through the ginseng farms by creating cool breezes during daytime in summer.

The ginseng cultivation system utilizes all the elements in the region which are all closely related to each other. Local lives and culture were not an exception. Due to the nature of ginseng farming, farmers often rotate to different medicinal herbs and food crops to provide for each other. Ginseng related traditions such as “Samjangjae” and “Jigaenolee” were also formed and passed down.

View Guemsan Traditional Ginseng Growing pics on Flickr

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