2021 AHPA awards recognize excellence in the herbal products industry

2021 AHPA awards recognize excellence in the herbal products industry

Dr. Rob Wildman, SafetyCall International, Herbalife Nutrition, Naturade, Indena S.p.A., and Tony Hayes (posthumously), awarded for outstanding contributions

Published: Wednesday, March 10, 2021

The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) announced the 2021 recipients of their annual AHPA Awards given to individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to the continued success of the herbal products industry. The awards were presented virtually at the annual meeting yesterday.

Established in 2006, the annual AHPA Awards acknowledge individuals and organizations that help further AHPA's goal of promoting the responsible commerce of herbs and herbal products.

A new awards category was added this year. AHPA's Vice President of Marketing & Engagement, Amber Bennett explains, “The AHPA Awards have been a big success within the community, and to help highlight the continued growth of our industry we are happy to announce a new award category: The AHPA Diversity and Inclusion Award. The Award reflects an excellence of commitment to the values of equality that serve to improve not only our industry, but benefit broader society as well.” Naturade took home the first AHPA Herbal and Inclusion Award.

2021 AHPA Award Winners

  • Hero Award: Dr. Rob Wildman
  • Herbal Industry Leadership Award: Herbalife Nutrition
  • Herbal Insight Award: Safety Call International, PLLC
  • Diversity & Inclusion Award: Naturade
  • Centennial Award: Indena S.p.A.
  • Herbal Pioneer Award: Tony Hayes


Dr. Wildman has tirelessly, vigorously and passionately served as chair of AHPA's Sports Nutrition Committee since its inception. Without fail, he broadens AHPA's reach by acknowledging his committee involvement to those within his professional circle, which is vast. Listening to Dr. Wildman speak is akin to a master class presentation being made. He's a walking, talking wealth of sports nutrition knowledge embodied in human form. This was never more evident than during the production of AHPA's inaugural Sports Nutrition Congress. Dr. Wildman graciously went above and beyond to make sure AHPA was represented excellently. He offered to work on agenda development, used his networking skills to procure the keynote speaker, and was willing to drive wherever he needed to if that's what it took to meet deadlines to get tasks completed. Dr. Wildman believes in the work AHPA does, and what AHPA was founded on; he has proven just how valuable of an asset he is to the community that is AHPA.

AHPA Industry Leadership

Since 1980, Herbalife Nutrition has been committed to investing in the best quality meal replacements, tea, aloe, and supplements for optimum nutrition, and millions around the world choose them to be a part of their daily nutrition.

Herbalife continues to produce the most demanding safety and quality standards in the industry. Their quality control systems are constantly monitored to ensure compliance with all government rules and regulations in the 90+ markets where its products are available.

What is more, Herbalife is dedicated to improving the lives of communities around the world by providing healthy nutrition and nutrition education to children and communities in need.

AHPA Herbal Insight

AHPA was a supporter of the Adverse Event Reporting legislation to help provide a defined process for industry and further demonstrate the safety of herbal and dietary supplements. SafetyCall is the industry leader in these types of services and a strong advocate for industry. SafetyCall operates a 24/7 adverse event call center. Their practitioners are the national leaders in product safety and clinical toxicology and are recognized throughout the country for their knowledge and experience. They have professionally authored over 100 product safety position papers and technical reports, published numerous articles and methodical abstracts in leading specialized journals, contributed a variety of book chapters, and given hundreds of scientific presentations in leading qualified venues.

AHPA Diversity & Inclusion

Naturade owners, Grant Hill and Kareem Cook discuss how Naturade is looking to make healthy and nutritious food available to all people regardless of income or grocery store access:

AHPA Centennial

Indena was born in 1921 in a landscape of conservative nature lovers, and ever since has been progressive in the way they look at nature through science. By consistently following the plants they have given the herbal industry a century of ideas, inventions, products and patents, leaving a permanent mark on the industry of nature by helping to improve both phytochemical culture and human health at large.

AHPA Herbal Pioneer

Tony Hayes was a producer and marketer of North American wildcrafted herbs for almost 50 years. He began his career in 1973 as an herb buyer for Lowe Fur and Herb of North Wilkesboro, then in 1981 went to work for Wilcox Drug Company in Boone, North Carolina. In 2000 he and his wife Sandy started their own business, Ridge Runner Trading Company. He was Appalachian born and bred, a man whose deep western North Carolina accent sung the story of his roots. He was a country gentleman, and a digger—someone as comfortable with going into his woods with a burlap bag and a shovel as he was selling locally harvested herbs to the largest companies in the country and meeting with federal regulators to represent his segment of the herb trade. Tony was a virtual warehouse of knowledge for herbal data, keeping records on things like the quantities and quality of herbs produced in any given year, and he shared that knowledge freely with all of us, making it available just for the asking. He was the person about whom people would say, “Call Tony, he’ll know.” We will all miss him.

"Every year, AHPA recognizes the hard work and dedication of individuals and organizations that go above and beyond to ensure the continued success of the herbal industry. AHPA and the entire herbal products industry have greatly benefited from their expertise and passion for herbs," said AHPA President Michael McGuffin. "These awards are a small token of our gratitude for their tireless efforts."


2022 Annual Fund Sponsors

AHPA appreciates the support of its sponsors, but does not endorse, recommend, or provide a warranty for any sponsor company, its products or services. AHPA has no responsibility for any transaction entered into with any of these companies.