We get permission from property owners, land managers, and make use of Front Counter BC's website to forage and harvest legally.
Not only do we forage and harvest our ingredients ourselves, but we do all our own processing and packaging as well.
We truly are 100% local!
When you go foraging, it is recommended to only take 5% of the useful parts of the plant so the plant can replenish itself and so animals and other people can also forage from the same plant. It is disheartening when you come across a plant on crown land that has been pillaged by someone who went before you.
Very few circumstances deviate from this rule. The end of a given fruit's season is one such deviation if you want that plant, bush or tree to produce a healthy crop next year. Failure to gather the fruit will tell the plant to produce less next year. This may mean fewer berries, or may mean smaller berries. Depressed plants will produce very few small (almost stunted) berries.
Due to the fact many of our ingredients are often considered weeds by property owners, being asked to completely remove a plant is another deviation from this rule. The property owner does not want the plant returning, or at the very least, returning in as great a quantity.
One man's compost is another mean's treasure! If you are such a property owner, do browse our teas and their ingredient lists. If you recognize what to you is a "weed" in a tea's ingredient list, contact us to come remove it for you. We will do so free of charge and process our haul for use in our wild teas.
NOTE: If you regularly spray your weeds, this may limit our ability to use them in our wild teas. We do not have the Organic label due to potential over-spray from commercial agricultural enterprises around the valley, but we do try to ensure what we harvest has not been directly or deliberately sprayed with chemicals.
Local, commercially-grown fruit that the farmer deems unsellable may also make it into our teas from time to time. These are washed to remove commercial sprays and/or waxes before processing. We encourage local commercial agriculture ventures to also consider donating their unsellable fruit and produce to local non-profit organizations such as The Gleaners, the local food bank, and other local cottage businesses such as ourselves. Soups, teas, sauces, etc., are all ways local, otherwise unsellable produce may be utilized for the good of the local population.
Research includes field guides, nutritional breakdowns, warnings and contra-indicators, potential uses both historically as well as those tested in modern labs, how-to's and suggested methods of preparation, best practices surrounding gathering, processing and storing, and so much more.
We do not offer you loose leaf "bandaids" but aim to offer you teas that can be of actual benefit as well as tasting and smelling inviting. Absolute claims that our teas WILL do this or that cannot and must not be made according to Canadian Law. We aim to respect the laws of our land in offering you our products.
Research into each ingredient means the creation of tea blends where everything works together. Our labels offer you a complete list of these ingredients, instructions for preparation, and any warnings necessary to ensure the discerning buyer purchases only what is best for their physical situation at the time.
Our research cannot replace the advice of your local holistic or naturopathic practitioner. However, if they recommend a list of herbs to you that you either can't find on your own, can't afford to buy, or would like in loose leaf format, contact us about your request and let us see what we can do to help.
Do take a moment to browse our current catalogue of teas.