About Us

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About Us


EBF is the result of the merging interests and concerns of two parties: The Belgian professional association O.P.P.As (Oriental Plant Promotion Association) and two Dutch operators in the field of Ayurveda. Together we have monitored the evolution and the interpretation of EU and national legislation in the past few years. We have come to the conclusion that under this legislation traditional disciplines will either be exterminated or else will survive as a ludricrous caricature of the original. As far as we are concerned, under the actual directives, the EU regulatory authorities are throwing the baby away with the bathwater. We will try, in an open dialogue with our partners, to develop viable alternatives to preserve those systems in the CAM healthcare landscape in the EU.

The general objective of EBF is to promote traditional phytotherapeuthical systems like Ayurveda and TCM, but not limited to these. EBF will defend the basic right of European citizens to access such sources of traditional healthcare when they choose to do so. In order to demonstrate the intrinsic and the added value such  time tested systems have to offer EBF will work on a suitable legal statute and the full integration in complementary healthcare.  To achieve this EBF will conduct the following specific activities:.


Sourcing and organizing of scientific database focusing on traditional medicinal plants.

Act as a scientific consultation source for quality-, safety- and efficacy-control of traditional herbal products, as well as centralizing and coordinating  post marketing vigilance.

Act as a consultative body with reference  to  the place of traditional phytotherapy in complementary healthcare.  As a consequence EBF will devote itself to the acquisition of a fair, responsible and adequate legal statute for traditional phytotherapy  within the EU health regulation.

In this capacity EBF will provide  well considered solutions and proposals to assure for Traditional systems  a legal framework which combines  maximal safety guarantees with consideration of  the characteristic properties and the economic  feasability.

EBF will achieve this through publications, mailings, conferences, petitions and legal interventions through every possible communication channel, targeting practitioners, professional associations, importers and distributors as well as the general public.

EBF will cooperate with State administrations and FDA’s  of exporting countries to promote the added value of traditional herbal systems as well as to establish stringent source control.

Chris Dhaenens, Belgium

Ewald Krishna Poeran

Harrie Sandhövel


Chris Dhaenens, Belgium



European University of TCM, Antwerp.

International Acupuncture Training Center, Beijing

Master Class in Western phytotherapy at Ky Lin Institute.The Hague.



Teacher of TCM herbal medicine, qigong and acupuncture in Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Spain, UK and Switzerland.

Member of the Belgian advisory committee on herbs and herbal preparations of the Belgian Ministry of Health.

President of O.P.P.As, a foundation co-ordinating the quality- and safety- control of Oriental herbal medicinal substances. O.P.P.AS is a representative organ in the Belgian Plant commission.

Consultant on quality-safety control for Ayurvedic and TCM herbal medicine.

Lecturer on Eastern philology, literature and philosophy of science.


Ewald Krishna Poeran


President – Art of Living Foundation Netherlands

President – International Association for Human Values Netherlands

CEO – Shankara Europe Holding BV

Secretary – Office of His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar in Europe

Member of the Board – Art of Living Belgium

Member of the Board – Art of Living Poland

CEO- Sri Sri Ayurveda Europe GmBH


Harrie Sandhövel


Out of a deep interest in Indian culture and philosophy, Harrie Sandhövel became one of the first distributors of Ayurvedic products in Europe. Almost 25 years ago he started his company Holisan Health Products in the Netherlands, ordering products from renowned manufacturers in India. In recent years under his management much research was done on plant and mineral data. Harrie Sandhövel closely cooperates with a network of specialists in both public and governmental research institutions.

Copyright © 2009 European Benefyt Foundation.

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