Five Things You May Not Know About Herb Pharm

by Gayle Gilham on August 5, 2019

in Featured Member

Herb Pharm

With a mission to create the highest quality herbal extracts available, this southern Oregon company is committed to educating people on how to practice safe, effective herbalism. Did you know…

  1. In the 1970s, founders Ed Smith and Sara Katz searched store shelves for extracts made with high quality ingredients and a thoughtful process. They wanted purity and simplicity; herbs that were good for them and the world around them. They didn’t find what they were looking for, as the herbs and capsules they did find were pallid, aroma-less and seemingly stripped of their natural bounty. What they did discover was literature on how to create their own extracts through old, used books like the United States Pharmacopeia and the National Formulary. These books (some dating back to the 1850s) introduced them to ways of preparing herbs that they’d never heard of.
  2. Herb Pharm officially came to life in 1979 when Ed and Sara moved to a wooded community of herb-enthusiasts in southern Oregon’s Josephine County. By 1982, they were successfully extracting herbs they’d grown and harvested in a lab attached to their home. As their products became more and more popular, they turned their home into a hub for the maturing company, building an addition that housed the lab and using their dining room as the shipping department. Sara used their typewriter to create labels for each bottle.
  3. In the mid-1980s, Herb Pharm was in a position to hire a few employees, and in keeping with the company’s mission, they offered their new hires benefits as soon as possible. In the mid-1990s, the company built a large facility dedicated to extracting herbs and to accommodate the increasing demand for their herbal products, and now employs nearly 150 people.
  4. In time, Ed and Sara’s home and lab became a classroom where the couple could pass their knowledge down to future herbalists. This training and educational system would eventually become the Herbaculture Internship Program. To this day, the program is a powerful, residential, hands-on experience in herbalism. Many intern graduates have gone on to become herbalists in their own right.
  5. As the company grew, so did their responsibility. Ed and Sara became the leading, founding members of United Plant Savers, or UpS, a group dedicated to preserving the native herb population in the US. The organization changed the way the herb world thought about cultivation and wildcrafting.

Cascade is proud to feature this employer, committed to learning and teaching others how to ethically create high quality extracts the Herb Pharm way – a way that cares for every plant, animal and person in every ecosystem we touch.

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