Is it worth paying extra for organic essential oils?
Whichever of the methods of using essential oils you use, quality is extremely important. It is the energy and therapeutic quality of the oil that will ensure maximum benefit. So, where possible, it is wise to use certifed organic essential oils or wild crafted essential oils.
Your choice will, of course, depend on how deep your pocket is. In some cases, organic essential oils are more or less the same price as non organic, but sometimes they are a lot more expensive. This can result from a combination of the artificially increased yields that some chemicals produce, production methods such as high temperature and high pressure distillation which produce a greater yield but a lower quality oil, and also the additional costs associated with the paperwork and bureaucracy of organic certification.
Wild crafted oils are a great solution, where available. These oils are wild grown (so they have not been subjected to manmade chemicals) and we can think of them as organic, but without the certification.
As a general rule, it is good to buy organic citrus oils, because the oil glands are in the outer rind of the fruit, which is also where chemicals may congregate.
In the same way that we have witnessed increased interest in organic food, we are on the threshold of a similar demand for organic quality in essential oils.
Oshadhi's collection contains 500 different essential oils, of which 70% are either certified organic, or are wild crafted. We offer Essential Oils, Essential Oil Absolutes, Hydrolats (Hydrosols), Carrier Oils, and Macerates which we source direct from farmers rather than dealers. 70% of our collection are either organic essential oils or are from wild-crafted plants. In this way we connect aromatherapists who are committed to natural healing methods, with growers who are dedicated to working with nature in a caring and considerate way.
Buying Direct from the Grower
Over the past 15-20 years, we have established strong ties with farmers of medicinal plants who are not only willing to contribute to the wise and prudent treatment of the soil, but have demonstrated a deep love of plants and respect for nature. Whenever we make contact with new farmers and producers we immediately draw their attention to the far-reaching positive consequences of responsible ecological farming.
In our search in various countries for farmers with these high standards, we have also witnessed increasing destruction of the soil due to the misuse of natural resources. This is specifically due to clear-cutting of plants, over-harvesting, the use of chemical fertilizers, the use of pesticides, herbicides and fungicides, and also mono-cultural farming. It is very unfortunate that only few farmers are aware of the dramatic consequences of these widespread practices.
Oshadhi's search for purity and ecological soundness in the area of essential oils is a task which needs energy and commitment. We are convinced that this is the way to secure a place for aromatherapy in man's growing awareness of nature, and to make use of its immense healing powers for many generations to come.
Using Chemicals in Therapeutic Plant Farming
Using chemicals in therapeutic plant farming goes against the very purpose of committing oneself to nature and health. However organic quality has been hard to obtain for two main reasons:
- Producing pure organic essential oils requires more time and involves greater risks, so it is usually only practised by relatively few small family enterprises.
- Furthermore, in the organic process, slow distillation at lower temperatures ensures the maximum retention of active components in the essential oil which contribute to its special aromatic and therapeutic effect. If an essential oil is distilled too quickly (high pressure, high temperature), many of these precious elements are lost.
There are some countries where it is simply not possible to obtain certified organic essential oils because appropriate monitoring organisations do not exist. In these cases we supply the wild grown and traditional essential oils which may be considered to be on a level with organic quality.