Organic Merchant offers more than your average cup of tea. Its extensive range includes certified organic herbal teas and cacao infusions, crafted from carefully selected ingredients that are hand-blended and beautifully presented. These botanical infusions are made to be enjoyed as part of your daily wellness routine.
Organic Merchant was founded by Naturopath Chalimah Jeanne, who began making teas for her in-clinic patients who suffered from chronic or terminal medical conditions. Chalimah’s tea blends became so popular that she began to sell them at the Paddington Markets in Brisbane on weekends. When she became pregnant with her first child, she decided to make it her full-time business. Organic Merchant is now stocked in over 500 stores nationwide and sells direct to consumers through their online store.
Chalimah’s interest in organics began from an early age through her love for nature and plants. This led to her studying horticulture then naturopathy, and she has been actively living an organic lifestyle for the past 20 years.
Organic Merchant has used organic ingredients since the beginning and made the decision early on to obtain organic certification. This has enabled them to provide a guarantee to consumers and ensure transparency within the supply chain – ensuring all products are created using the highest quality ingredients available that have limited negative effects on the environment during the production process.
“We believe that being certified organic is a must-have in today’s wellness industry. More and more people are actively seeking out products that are guaranteed organic. It shows customers that we care about what goes into our
products and that we care about our suppliers, growers and the environment.”
The brand also recognises the growing importance of certification marks for consumers seeking out ways to
authenticate their organic purchases, including the Bud certification logo.
“Being certified to the Bud about being aligned to our values of caring about the earth and sustainability as well as honesty, transparency, authenticity and integrity. A growing number of people are seeking out the Bud logo as a decision-maker in purchasing products. We feel this will be mandatory for the brand moving forward in the wellness space.”
When it comes to standing out in the industry, Organic Merchant offers a bespoke experience; organic teas that have been carefully crafted to be beneficial to your body as well as tasting great. The ‘Ask Chalimah’ is a personal tea recommendation service available through the Organic Merchant website and is a great place to seek out advice on the ideal herbal tea for your health.
“We are able to offer teas that are naturopathically formulated to provide a health benefit as well as deliver on taste. We have won a number of awards for the taste of our blends, including blind tasting awards, and believe this comes from the quality of ingredients that we use.”
Organic Merchant pride themselves in offering an experience led journey; via the online store, telephone, the recommendation service with Chalimah and stockists who are trained on the products and blends. The store has also recently introduced its ‘Dust’ range – a range of functional cacao powders that offer a different way to get your daily vitamin intake. The Dusts can be used in a variety of ways, from baking and smoothies to coffee and hot chocolate.
“Raw cacao is high in antioxidants, and it has been mixed with a range of super-herbs, suitable for a range of benefits. For example, the Spirit Dust is all about fighting adrenal fatigue and gives a sweet hit without the sugar. We wanted to introduce something functional and versatile that wasn’t a herb but a powder. It’s a modern way of presenting herbs that can be easily incorporated into food and drinks.”
Sharing the experience of many organic brands, Organic Merchant saw an increase in online sales during the height of the pandemic, and many stockists were able to remain open during lockdown periods. However, their supply chain has been impacted by the border closures, making it difficult to source ingredients.
“We have been very lucky on the whole as everyone needs a cup of tea, especially in times where health is at the forefront of people’s minds. We have worked very closely with those stores that have had to close and have provided support to help them transition online where needed. Our supply chain has definitely been affected for certain ingredients and will continue to be for a few years now, however, we have been able to adjust our forecasting and plan for the future.”
For those new to Organic Merchant and not sure where to start, Chalimah suggests beginning with what you know you like – mint, spice or fruit. Beginning with traditional teas and working your way up to more complex blends may make for an easier transition.
“As a Naturopath, my default would be to ask new customers about any health concerns they have and then suggest certain herbs and blends that would support those. There are several other ways to start your journey with herbal tea, ranging from favourite taste profiles i.e. fruity, floral, spicy, savoury and vegetal – OR we might suggest something that suits the current season. One of our favourites is the Antioxidant Tea, a best-seller, which is full of berry goodness and great as an everyday tea.”