Last Monday I posted a poll on the Newport's Naturals Facebook page asking for folks to chime in regarding which essential oil grades they are most concerned about when making a selection. Is it more important for your Essential Oils to be Therapeutic Grade or Food Grade? This was kind of a tricky question and maybe even a bit of a trick question. Let's unpack this further.
We can start by digging into essential oil Grading. Is there a single standard for achieving a specific Grade? Who determines if an essential oil earns a specific Grade such as Food Grade or Therapeutic Grade? Is there a single entity or set of standards? Here's a clue: NO. There is no standard for Grading Essential Oils in the USA. There is no Essential Oil Grading Entity in the USA.
Although the FDA does recognize some essential oils as GRAS (Generally Regarded As Safe), it does not provide grading standards to determine if a particular essential oil would be considered Food Grade. Keep in mind that a GRAS designation only applies to use of these Essential Oils in FOODS, not cosmetics. The same Lot of Marjoram Essential oil can find it's way into your crackers or your lotion. No difference.
Now, how about Therapeutic Grade? So uh, that's a totally made up marketing term. Really. I'll wait while you do a Google search or feel free to click on the reference links at the bottom of this blog post. It's just marketing. Clever marketing, but marketing all the same.
Let's move on.
Grading is only determined by the manufacturers or distributors by use of their own in house grading standards (if that's even a thing). So let's say Company A sells Food Grade Lemon Essential Oil, but Company A is also responsible for determining that the essential oil is Food Grade. Company B may have a completely different standard for grading and would never recognize that particular Lot of Lemon Essential Oil as Food Grade. They each have their own standard that they are responsible for setting. Which means jack squat.
There is no Standard. There is no Grading System. One more time for y'll in the back. There is no Standard. There is no Grading System.
So I guess the next questions would be, who are you buying your Therapeutic Grade or Food Grade Essential Oils from? Were they transparent with you regarding the Grading System they use? Did you feel comfortable buying the product they were selling because they sold you the notion that their product was somehow special? Think about that.
The internet is full misinformation. As a professional, I do my very best to question everything. Does that mean I get it right all the time? No, but I sure try. The above information isn't intended to discredit anyone, i just want you question what you're told and what you're sold.
My goal is to continue doing better for YOU. That's why I published this blog. I want you to know that I am vigilant and thirsty for knowledge so I can constantly put forth the very best products that you can TRUST. I'd love to earn your trust by covering topics you are interested in. Do you have any suggestions for future blog topics? Let me know.