Respect for the land including the plants and animals, is ingrained in the traditional practices of First Nations cultures. As stewards of the land, First Nations traditionally employed a range of strategies to ensure resource use - including the use of medicinal plants - was sustainable. Sustainable harvesting practices applied to medicinal plants developed out of a close relationship with the environment (6).
In recent years, many Aboriginal People have become concerned about the threat to the environment - including valuable plant resources - presented by industrial forestry practices (7). Increased demand for medicinal plants has also led to concerns about the potential over-harvesting of important medicinal species in the future (8). Some believe that if First Nations can regain responsibility for the development, management and protection (9) of traditional medicinal plants, they can ensure a sustainable harvest of these important resources.