Hoodia and unstainable herb harvesting
Trafficking in Hoodia as a weight-loss aid is starting to resemble the plot of the movie Blood Diamond, what with reports of smuggling and gangster involvement in its sale. The end result may be the plant's extinction in the wild.
This story illustrates the dangers involved when an herb is promoted as a wonder drug (typically with scant evidence) and marketers rush to cash in on the craze. Those wanting to take a chance on Hoodia extract might want to think about ensuring that it comes from a sustainably-farmed operation and not wild-harvested plants.