This learning module introduces you to the broad historical context within which the current use and management of “Non-timber forest products” or NTFPs has developed.
Although often perceived as a ‘new’ industry, human use of what we now describe as non-timber forest products or NTFPs was likely the first use of forest resources by humans. For example, for First Nations people, NTFPs were essential resources for survival, sources of trading goods, and important contributions to the rich and vibrant culture of these societies.
The commercial development of NTFPs is comparatively recent, but has a longer history than is generally recognized. The dynamic nature of commercial trade in these products is driven by demand, which in turn is dependent on established needs, trends, fashions, and new discoveries. With a renewed interest in ‘natural’ and ‘traditional’ products, we can expect to see NTFPs in the marketplace for many years to come.
Today, non-timber forest resources play an important role in the economic activities of many communities, First Nations and non-First Nations alike. To ensure the sustained use of these resources, we must learn how to combine traditional management practices with new management knowledge.
In this module, you can learn more about:
- First Nations Historical Use and Management of NTFPs
- Current First Nations Use and Management of NTFPs
- Early Commercial Development of NTFPs
- Current Commercial Use of NTFPs