In article <1993Oct30.152245.21471 at jupiter.sun.csd.unb.ca>,
Sandy Clarke <casclark at atlas.cs.upei.ca> wrote:
> I am looking for information on growing Evening Primrose
>(oenothera biennis ) for the pharmaceutical indestury. If any one can give
>me any suggestions or comments I would appreciate it. I believe it is used
I am not aware of any reference with technical details on growing evening
primrose as a crop for the pharmaceutical industry; however, as a supplier
of seeds I can offer the following comments.
Evening primrose is a commercial crop in southern Ontario where several
strains have been developed. The most common seems to be 'EP 10' which
exhibits desirable yield, hardiness, and anti-shatter qualities. It is
this variety that we sell.
Typically the pharmaceutical industry contracts with farmers to grow seed,
and usually provides seeds from its own varieties. The industry is
reluctant to share any information and seed stock outside the company-
farmer compact; so it is has been difficult for general herb seed companies
like Richters to break in and make seeds widely available.
Since evening primrose is a crop with special marketing challenges, it is
advisable to contact the pharmaceutical companies that are doing growing
contracts. This way, you will benefit from the know-how and seed stocks
that are available from them. If, however, you seek to establish your
own marketing channels, we can supply seeds and some information to help
you get started. One advantage of "going alone" is that you will not
be susceptible to the whims of the contracting company. Many farmers in
Ontario suffered heavy losses when one company failed to live up to its
contractual obligations a few years ago.
The best known company in the industry is Efamol, and their research
institute, the Efamol Research Institute, Box 818, Kentville, NS B4N 4H8,
is a good place to start making inquiries. I am not sure if they are
doing any contracts with farmers currently. You could also contact Dr.
Ib Nonnecke at the University of Guelph, who is the leading Canadian
researcher in the agronomics of evening primrose.
L0C 1A0 Canada