Conservation and Sustainable Exploitation of indigenous Medicinal and Aromatic plants traditionally used in the SEE, WB countries. A model approach for Sideritis spp. (Mountain tea)

Project ID: ERA 135
Funding including national funding and EC funding:
Total costs: 145,000 € SEE-ERA.NET PLUS funding: 128,200 €
Project duration: 01.10.2010 / 30.09.2012

The purpose of the present project is to establish a network of scientists from three WB countries (Serbia, Croatia and FYR Macedonia) and one E.U member (Greece) working on different disciplines regarding the Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (MAPs) and Food testing business, aiming at the conservation and sustainable exploitation of indigenous Sideritis species traditionally used in the SEE, WB countries. Sideritis, known in Balkan area as “mountain tea”, is used traditionally as a popular decoction, widely consumed and established as food medicine. Plant extracts of many Sideritis species are known to be biologically active and there is an increasing interest for the last years on its antioxidant activities. Several Sideritis species are endemic for the Balkan Flora. It is collected from natural resources and due to the often overexploitation, many wild populations are seriously threatened. Taking into consideration, the existing threats on particular Sideritis species, along with the quite wide public acceptance, as far as the traditional health benefits knowledge, and the rural development, the proposed network intends to cooperate on Conservation and Sustainable exploitation activities - in situ, ex situ and on farm, along with morphological and molecular characterization of target Sideritis species, on Food product quality assessments (characterization of biologically active compounds and mineral content), and to elaborate Nutritional & Health Claims requirements for the selected Sideritis species. The project outputs will be disseminated to the scientific community, the public and to key actors, aiming at the awareness of the threats and preservation actions of indigenous Sideritis and other MAP species, as far as the diffusion of the knowledge on the health benefits of this traditional food.

Partners involved:

National Agricultural Research Foundation
A.R.C.N.G-Department of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants
Nagref Campus Thermi
57001 Thermi/Thessaloniki, Greece
Dr. Paschalina Chatzopoulou

5 Bizaniou Str.
74100 Rethymno, Greece
Mr. Andreas Varlamos

Institute for Medicinal Plant Research
Department for Science and Development
11000 Belgrade, Serbia
Dr. Nebojsa Menkovic

University Ss Cyril and Methodius
Faculty of Pharmacy, Institute of Pharmacognosy
17, Vodnjanska str.
1000 Skopje, FYR of Macedonia
Prof. Svetlana Kulevanova

University of Zagreb, Faculty of Agriculture
Department of Seed Science and Technology
Svetosimunska 25
10000 Zagreb, Croatia
Prof. Zlatko Satovic