A list of dried herbs I have available. All of my herbs are grown organically and processed here in Kapiti, New Zealand. They have been lovingly harvested at the appropriate time, efficiently dried and stored to maintain their active constituents. I strive to follow the best methods for each particular herb to ensure the you get the best quality product.
There are two Australian wholesalers of premium grade herbs that use a 5-star rating system to assess the quality of the herbs they handle. At this stage I don’t know of any other rating system or quality control for dried herbs in New Zealand. So here is their specifications to qualify as premium grade.. (I sourced the 5-star assessment system from the wonderful book Herbal Harvest by Greg Whitten.)
The 5-Star Assessment System
1. Certified Organic or Biodynamic: This must be by a recognised certification body.
2. Good Colour and Vibrancy: The dried herb should look healthy, with no significant fading or discolouration, bearing in mind what is realistically achievable for that particular herb.
3. Good Flavour and Aroma: Flavour and aroma should be close to as good as can be obtained for each species in the dried form. Naturally there is going to be some seasonal and regional variation. There should not be any significant loss or lack of flavour due to the growing and drying conditions or the use of an inferior variety.
4. No Significant Discoloured Leaf or Impurities and No Excess of Stem: While inevitably there will be a very small proportion of discoloured and faded leaf in most herbs, this should be an absolute minimum. The proportion of stem included should not exceed the buyer’s standard for the form of that particular herb.
5. Correct Particle Size: The herb should be processed to a form appropriate for its intended use.
Therefore under this system if the herb meets the above standards it is classed as premium grade, 5-star quality. If it fails to meet the standard on one point, it will get a 4-star rating.
I grow my herbs strictly organically but at this stage of the game am not certified organic so my herbs would have a 4-star rating under this system.