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close this bookCommercialization of Non-Timber Forest Products in Amazonia (NRI, 1993, 26 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentForeword
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentAbbreviations
View the documentGlossary
View the documentSummary
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentRubber and extractive reserves
View the documentOther extractive products
View the documentImpact of commercialization
View the documentThe future of extractivism
View the documentResearch and development priorities
View the documentConclusions
View the documentReferences
View the documentAppendix 1
View the documentAppendix 2


This study examines the impacts of the development of the principal extractive products of the Amazon and identifies the main factors affecting sustainable welfare benefits for extractive groups. These include tenure instability, policies favouring alternative land uses, aviamento, commercialization systems, commercial pressures resulting in resource depletion where the extraction method is destructive, and the boom-bust nature of export markets that inevitably lead to substitution by a synthetic or planted product. The future of extractivism depends on better remuneration for extractors, whether through the market or not, tenure and institutional reforms (i.e. extractive reserves), and successful diversification through integrated natural forest management. The cultivation of formerly wild plants in agroforestry systems should also be given high priority. Extractivism on its own, and under present market conditions, has major limitations as a response to deforestation pressures, but there are important strategic and humanitarian reasons for its support while longer term solutions are being developed.