Origanum vulgare is a perennial herb and a member of the mint family, lamiaceae, native to Western and Southwestern Eurasia and the Mediterranean region. The plant grows up to 3 feet high, with dark green leaves and a majestic purple flower. It can take up to 100lbs of oregano plants to make 1lb of the essential oil of wild oregano. The oil of oregano is high in phenolic compounds such as carvacrol, making this concentrated natural oil very powerful.
The Greeks and Romans had a profound appreciation for oregano and indigenous cultures have used it since ancient times. In fact, its name, “Oregano”, comes from the Greek words “oros” and “ganos,” which are words for “mountain” and “joy” — oregano literally means “joy of the mountain.”
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The nutrient content of oregano as well as its phytochemical properties can vary dramatically, depending on its harvesting and production methods. We have found many plants are improperly grown and do not offer the full spectrum of benefits typically cited in the scientific literature that we are looking for.
Drying the plant under high heat for long periods of time can affect both strength and composition of the critical phytonutrient compounds in oregano. The dried flowers and leaves of the wild oregano plant should be harvested when the oil content of the plant is at its highest and should be golden to dark yellow, with a strong spicy odor.
Good quality oregano should exhibit a spicy aroma with an intense taste that may be strong enough to numb the tongue for a few seconds. Before the preparation of the oil of oregano begins, the scientists in our FDA-inspected lab first authenticate the botanical identity of the oregano (this helps to exclude raw materials that may have been adulterated with the wrong species or other look-alike herbs such as marjoram or thyme).
Next, our scientists complete an in-depth phytoforensic screening where we inspect for undesirable inorganic materials such as herbicides and pesticides. Our PRL quality guarantee ensures that our oil of oregano meets or exceeds FDA requirements for identity, purity, strength, composition while testing for contaminates such as heavy metals (including arsenic, mercury, cadmium and lead), residual solvents in extracts and pathogenic microbiology. The raw materials in this product have not been solvent- extracted or heat damaged.