As the Conservative lead on health in the European Parliament, Marina visited Kew Gardens to find out more about medicinal plants and the work that Kew does to ensure that patients receive herbal medicines which are authentic, safe and properly labelled.

The herbal medicine market in Europe is worth £3¼ million a year. Kew’s Chinese Medicinal Plants Authentication and Conservation Centre houses a reference collection of 4,500 specimens under controlled conditions.

The specimens are used in chemical and molecular profiling to help regulators and the pharmaceutical trade to ensure the authenticity of herbal ingredients.

Marina also met with Kew’s Director, Richard Deverell to discussed the wider European relevance of Kew and its Medicinal Plants Service.

Marina said: “With the growing popularity of herbal medicines it is important that consumers know exactly what they are getting.

“There can be confusion about the naming of herbal ingredients, which in the past as had fatal consequences.

“I am pleased that work to ensure that the work to ensure that patients receive authentic and safe ingredients is going on here, at Kew, in my London constituency.”

To find out more about Marina’s visit to Kew see here.

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