Rapid risk assessment to harvesting of wild medicinal
and aromatic plant species in Morocco for conservation
and sustainable management purposes
· Rachida Hassikou
Received: 9 October 2017 / Revised: 29 January 2018 / Accepted: 23 May 2018
© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018
Abstract The increased demand for natural products from wild aromatic and medicinal
plants has stimulated several research projects focusing on phytochemistry, ethnobotany,
pharmacognosy and many other sub-disciplines related to medicine and pharmacy or cos-
metology and chemical industry in general. Morocco is one of the richest Mediterranean
countries whose ﬂora is well known and many of its plant resources and products very
demanded by consumers and manufacturers but there is an urgent need to deal with wild
medicinal and aromatic plants namely found on public lands. In this study, we attempt to
identify and assess the wild species to overharvesting especially those in forest lands and
then identify priority ones. A rapid vulnerability assessment approach was applied to 182
species inventoried referring to its biological, ecological and chorological criteria then
combined to trade data. We obtained three groups of MAP species depending on its vulner-
ability ranked from high to very low vulnerability and their availability at national level.
A list of 25 priority species was sorted on its economic value for export and then only the
most representative ones within each region was identiﬁed to analyze its corresponding
actions. These insights could be applied to improve the conservation policies and guide the
sustainable management and economic valuation plans to implement the Moroccan Medic-
inal and aromatic plants strategy.
Keywords Conservation · Sustainable harvesting · Vulnerability assessment · Medicinal
and aromatic plants · Morocco
Communicated by David Hawksworth.
This article belongs to the Topical Collection: Biodiversity exploitation and use.
* Mostafa Lamrani-Alaoui
Ecole Nationale Forestière d’Ingénieurs, Salé, Morocco
Faculté des Sciences, Université Mohammed V, Rabat, Morocco