Collection, cultivation and processing of medical plants, herbs and spices in the Balaton Ecomuseum – herbal medicine as intangible cultural heritage
Keywords:herbs, spices, herbal medicine, ecomuseum, intangible cultural heritage, Lake Balaton, Zánka Herb Valley, grapevine, pharmacognosy, zoopharmacognosy, animal self-medication
The Balaton Ecomuseum, which is being continuously developed since 2017, will have a holistic approach, where the objectives of the ecomuseum embrace the whole cultural landscape of Lake Balaton as one unit with several thematic routes in one system and shall not be restricted to one particular subject area or a part of local heritage. One of these thematic routes is the recently developing Herbs and Spices Network, led by Zánka Herb Valley Visitor and Training Centre based on the collection, cultivation and processing of medicinal plants, herbs and spices. The place of herbs and spices in the diet needs to be considered in reviewing health benefits, including definitions of the food category and the way in which benefits might be viewed, and therefore researched. Here we describe the already established system of the Zánka Herb Valley Visitor and Training Centre, the potential of the Balaton Region in the development of herbal medicine illustrated by the scientific presentation of the 30 most collected herbs in the region and examples of other herbal centres, which are intended to become a part of the network. Herbal medicine, as an important part of the intangible cultural heritage, with hundreds of years old recipes for herbal concoctions has been known since ancient times before science related to modern medicine developed and continues to be used for generations until now. Furthermore, the medical effects of many agricultural crops should be better understood, such as the grapevine, which is being investigated for its medical compounds or the medicinal properties of other fruits and vegetables not sufficiently known to the general public. In this study we present a new system of the culture and interactive education of the collection, cultivation and use of medicinal plants, herbs and spices applying a learning by doing approach and a network embracing the whole area of the Balaton Ecomuseum.
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Copyright (c) 2020 Sandor Nemethy; Tamas Takacs, Laszlo Szemethy, Bosse Lagerqvist, Zoltan Barocsi, Aniko Dinya, Ilona Peterffy
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