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For anyone who has questions abo ...

Posted Jan 14 2009 7:38pm
For anyone who has questions about the manufacturing, use, and promotion of essential oils, here's the latest word...


Dear Young Living Distributors,

Over the last few months, Young Living has received a number of inquiries concerning misinformation with little or no basis in truth. In response to requests from field leaders, we have crafted this FAQ sheet to provide accurate information on a variety of issues.


Q. Is it possible to have a successful business with an established company like Young Living? I have heard that becoming a distributor for a network marketing company within its first year greatly increases your chances of financial success. Is that true?

A. The scary truth is that most newly-minted MLM companies launching this year will go bankrupt in the next five. Industry experts say the most important determining factor for success in our industry is to join a stable company that has made it past those tenuous "start-up" years. Beyond that, the likelihood someone will be successful increases by joining a company with a unique product and story, great mentors, solid training, fair compensation, and a strong front office. With respect to each of these there has never been a better time to be with Young Living.

While creating and defining the essential oils category over the past fourteen years YL has achieved impressive and steady growth and continues to improve its position as the world leader in essential oils in the rapidly expanding $16 billion market for natural health solutions. Our distributorship is growing at a record pace, and our impressive compensation program and training programs are helping distributors earn rapid, residual, and record incomes. We attribute our success to our founder's relentless search for new and innovative essential oil therapies, our intensive commitment to quality, and aggressively reinvesting capital into research and development. Not only do we have a solid financial base and a staff of experts with unequalled enthusiasm and knowledge, Young Living is on a mission to transform the world and the lives of everyone we touch.

Here are eight key elements that make Young Living different from any other firm in the world:

1. Own organic herb farms and custom-built essential oil distillation facilities on three continents.
2. Have one of the largest libraries of scientific review papers on essential oils in the world.
3. Have a president who has devoted almost a quarter century to studying and growing therapeutic-grade essential oil.
4 Have company leaders who have published twelve research papers and nine books on the therapeutic benefits of essential oils and herbs.
5. Have a president who has studied at nine foreign universities.
6. Have a founder who has spoken at the United Nations conference on essential oils.
7. Have a staff of essential oil experts who regularly travel the world searching for the finest essential oils being produced.
8. Offer totally unique and natural products that get immediate results.

Q. Is Young Living concerned about competition?

A. No. As the world leader in essential oils we have yet to identify any real competition. The inevitable entrance of new oil sellers in the marketplace is an opportunity to further set ourselves and our products apart. We established the Young Living therapeutic-grade standard and we will continue to lead the way. With our commitment to plants, preparation, purity, and potency, we guarantee the products we deliver remain undiluted from seed to seal and are the best quality essential oil available.

Q. Has there been an increase in employee turnover recently at Young Living?

A. For a young and growing company like Young Living overall employee turnover remains at a constant and typical level. In the last year several employees who interact with our field left, but this is not out of the ordinary. Employees move on for any number of reasons. In a mission, product driven company like Young Living there are employees whose philosophy, attitude, and passion naturally mesh with our culture and there are those who do not, they choose to leave and we wish them well. Young Living's emphasis on helping people renew their lives through novel phytoconcentrates is very different from a typical money-making model and can be frustrating for some. While some employees might see Young Living's organic farms and medical clinics as profit drains and distractions, YL views these resources as unique assets with an unmatched power to guarantee quality, provide validating research, and change lives.

Q. Has Young Living been slandering former employees or business competitors?

A. No. Young Living would never participate in such inappropriate, unprofessional, and unnecessary activities. Our corporate mantra is to take the high road and focus on the positive things we know are happening, not what our critics are inventing about us. We welcome an open dialogue with anyone interested in clearing up any negative or inflammatory things they might have heard. We have seen that an honest and careful examination of the facts defuses the situation 99 percent of the time.

Q. Were the former Young Living employees now affiliated with DoTerra forced to leave Young Living?

A. All of our former employees, with one exception, now affiliated with DoTerra chose to leave Young Living on their own.

Q. Is Young Living protecting itself from former employees who are now competitors?

A. Any highly successful business will create imitators, most of who will try to cut corners to maximize profits, while avoiding necessary reinvestments in farms, distilleries, clinics, and research. As the world leader, we have frequently seen these competitors come and go. While Young Living reserves the right to take legal action if a competitor disobeys laws or attempts to gain unfair advantage, it is not our preference. We prefer to address competition with continuous improvement, uncompromising quality, and maintaining the highest ethical standards.

Q. I have been contacted by a competing essential oils company. What questions should I ask?

A. Young Living does not release confidential customer information to any third party, for any reason. If, however, you are contacted by a competing essential oil company, it is within your rights to know where and how they obtained your information. Furthermore, if contacted by a different essential oil company, you can determine their level of commitment by asking questions such as:

. Has the company dedicated numerous years to gain knowledge about essential oils?
. Does the company own more than 4,500 acres of farmland on three continents?
. Does the company distill herbs?
. Does the company offer the largest essential oil collection in the world?
. Does the company test essential oils both in-house and with independent labs?
. Does the company guarantee to only offer 100% pure oils produced from carefully identified plants?
. Does the company personally experiment and research the growth, harvesting, and distillation of essential oils?
. Does the company routinely visit it's suppliers to ensure the best manufacturing practices?
. What peer-reviewed research has the company published? Have they tested their oils in clinical settings?
. If the company claims to be "certified therapeutic-grade," specifically which essential oil experts have certified it?

Q. Why do some competitor essential oils smell so different from Young Living's? They seem to smell sweeter-almost like candy.

A. Young Living harvests, distills, and sells therapeutic-grade essential oils-not confections. Authentic, natural essential oils that have proven potency are not designed to smell candy-like; rather, they are designed to have unmatched therapeutic potency. An overly sweet aroma is actually a hallmark of a manipulated or adulterated essential oil, rather than a therapeutic one.

Q. Does Young Living adulterate, dilute, or cut its oils in any way?

A. We do not dilute, cut, or allow any adulteration to our single oils or the single oils we place in our oil blends, supplements, or other products, nor do we fractionate (isolate or distill out specific components) our essential oils. We harvest, distill, and sell only 100% natural, pure essential oils that meet the Young Living therapeutic-grade standard.

One of Young Living's defining attributes is that we take quality so seriously that we actually own and operate our own farms and steam extraction equipment. We have operations on three continents, including Europe, South America, and North America that produce the finest essential oils on earth. Again, no other vendor is more fanatical on quality.

Young Living's founder, Gary Young, has spent twenty-three years acquiring knowledge on herb cultivation and proper essential oil distillation and has worked with the foremost world experts on essential oils including Daniel Penoel, MD, Jean-Claude Lapraz, MD, Radwan Farag, PhD, and countless others.

Moreover, Sue Chao, MS, the director of quality control and director of Young Living's chemistry lab, has spent over a decade working with Gary Young and other researchers to refine and develop the unique Young Living therapeutic-grade standard. Every year, Gary and YL staff travel across the world to personally inspect essential oil distilleries and herb cultivation to ensure the highest medicinal quality.

A little known fact is that Young Living rejects 72 percent of all essential oils received for analysis. These oils are found to be extended, adulterated, or sub-therapeutic. It is a sad fact that all of these rejected oils will eventually be sold and marketed by other less discerning buyers at a lower price.

Q. What is Young Living's therapeutic-grade standard, and how does it compare to standards such as AFNOR and ISO?

A. When Gary Young started researching essential oil quality in the early 1990s, a patchwork of different independent standards existed including "Grade A," "AFNOR," "ISO," German Commission E, and others. Many of these standards were designed for the perfume industry and did not necessarily correlate with the health benefits of the essential oils.

About nine years ago, Young Living created a special category of essential oil quality known as "therapeutic-grade," that incorporated elements of these standards into a new benchmark and linked essential oil composition with its medicinal effects. Since then, other companies have begun using this term to describe their oils. It is important that consumers not confuse these oils with the Young Living therapeutic-grade standard. Some oil sellers would have you believe that there are other laboratories, organizations, or associations qualified to certify an essential oil as therapeutic-grade. This is not true. There is no one other than Young Living qualified to certify an essential oils as therapeutic-grade. Young Living has spent more than a decade defining the Young Living therapeutic-grade standard based on:

. Clinical research on essential oils involving medical professionals
. Reviews of thousands of single patient anecdotal reports
. Investigation of historical and traditional uses
. Analysis of thousands of peer-reviewed scientific studies of essential oils
To date, Young Living's library of university peer-reviewed research papers on essential oils encompasses thousands of articles stored in multiple filing cabinets and is one of the largest-if not THE largest-in the world.

For simplicity we illustrate Young Living's therapeutic-grade standard with our "Four P's" philosophy: Plants, Preparation, Purity, and Potency.

1. Plants
Young Living's therapeutic-grade standard begins with selecting the correct family, genus, and species of an herb and ensuring it is grown in the correct soil, altitude, and weather conditions. For example, a number of different species of frankincense resins are collected in different regions of Africa, India, and the Middle East. Some of these species include Boswellia frereana, Boswellia serrata, and Boswellia carterii. Each species has very different therapeutic activity.

Moreover, even among trees of the same species (i.e., carterii) resin and oil quality varies dramatically depending on where the trees are grown. Are they located in a wetter coastal area? Or an interior, semi-arid location? At what altitude do the trees prosper? Is the tree located in Arabia, India, or Africa? All of these factors are critical in determining the selection of a truly therapeutic-grade frankincense essential oil. In the case of frankincense, only the true frankincense of Biblical origin-Boswellia carterii-that is grown in select coastal locations, contains therapeutic-grade oil.

In fact, B. carterii is the exact same species that was studied at Harvard Medical School and the University of Maryland Medical School for its immune modulating effects (Chevrier et al, 2005). In contrast, the other species of "frankincense," including B. sacra and B. serrata ("Indian frankincense"), have no Biblical antecedents and have not been studied at this level of university study.

Gary Young spent years visiting Africa and Arabia to source the correct locations of this true frankincense, the only species capable of producing oil with noted historic and medical research value. Using analyses such as gas chromatography, optical rotation, and specific gravity, Gary identified frankincense with the optimal immune-modulating, antitumoral, and anti-depressive properties.

2. Preparation
Even the best herbs can be ruined or damaged if they are not harvested and distilled properly. Plants must be harvested at the right time and then masterfully distilled. Once distilled the oils must be handled carefully to protect their living energy and volatile components. For example, the distillation of frankincense is a closely guarded art that is handed down from generation to generation.
The sticky gum resin must be distilled in a specially designed steam extraction chamber using unique techniques that keep the gum resin from becoming glued to the walls of the equipment, burning or scorching, and producing inferior grade oil with little therapeutic effect.

3. and 4. Purity and Potency
Every batch of essential oils, whether distilled on our own farms or flown in from a trusted outside distiller, is subjected to state-of-the-art analysis at the Young Living chemistry lab. With more than a half million dollars worth of the most advanced equipment in the world, biochemist Sue Chao and her staff subject every incoming lot of essential oils to a battery of tests including gas chromatagraphy, GC/MS, heavy metals analysis, and many other advanced assays. Oils that exhibit even the slightest hint of possible tampering or adulteration-even if provided from a trusted supplier-are sent to outside laboratories for even more in-depth dissection using techniques such as carbon isotope analysis.

Our recent experiences with Helichrysum italicum essential oil demonstrate our commitment to this standard. Recently, Young Living rejected and returned several million dollars worth of helichrysum, even though this oil was badly needed and is very difficult to find and produce. While this batch of Helichrysum italicum was nearly identical to the helichrysum preferred by Young Living, two compounds did not match the profile for a truly "therapeutic-grade" essential oil. At best the oil could only be classified as "sub-therapeutic" and thus it was rejected.

Frustrated distributors often ask why a product is not available. This is because we refuse to sell inferior oils. Indeed, it is becoming increasingly more difficult to locate genuine therapeutic-grade essential oils that have not been extended or tampered with. Moreover, many essential oils are only distilled once or twice a year, and the temptation to adulterate is becoming more rampant.

The bottom line is: We grow it, we harvest it, we distill it, we test it, and we bottle it. From seed to seal, our experience focuses on the true Young Living therapeutic-grade standard. And the proof is in the oil.

Q. Does Young Living acquire frankincense from India?

A. Young Living only procures frankincense (B. carterii) from a special region near the Arabian Peninsula where it has been collected for centuries. Frankincense from India is not regarded as true Biblical frankincense and is harvested from an entirely different species known as Boswellia serrata or "Indian frankincense." Comparing Biblical frankincense (B. carterii) with Indian frankincense (B. serrata) is the same as comparing a diamond to cubic zirconium.

Q. Does Young Living's frankincense contain boswellic acid?

A. Boswellic acid is not an oil-soluble aromatic compound and is not found in the essential oil of frankincense. It is a water-soluble compound that remains dissolved in the water during the distillation process and cannot be separated as an essential oil. Resellers or distributors, who claim their frankincense oil contains boswellic acid, are either misinformed or selling a composite oil-water mixture that does not exist in nature.

Q. Some are suggesting that for an oil to be therapeutic the plant must be grown in an area in which it is indigenous? i.e. lavender from France, lemon from Italy, Frankincense from Oman. Is this true?

A: Although some areas are well-known for historically producing quality oils, the key to growing herbs with therapeutic value is combining the right altitude, climate, and soil conditions. It is a well known fact that the highest quality plants are not necessarily found where they are native or indigenous. Take for example, Malus domestica, the apple. While it originated in Central Asia and is native to Kazakhstan, apples are cultivated successfully throughout the world, including Italy, France, Poland, Russia, and the United States, with the best specimens being produced in the State of Washington, which is 5,700 miles away from Kazakhstan. The same is true with peppermint, which is indigenous to Europe, but is now thriving in Australia, India, and the United States. Again, Washington State leads in essential oil quality and production. The bottom line is that plants thrive where soil and climate is best, not where they are indigenous.

Q. It's been said that Italy produces the highest quality lemon oil. How does it compare to oils from Brazil and the United States?

A: The region from which citrus oils are obtained can be crucial for determining quality. A major problem with many cold-pressed citrus essential oils such as orange or lemon is harmful petrochemical residues. A recent University of Messina study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that Italian lemon oils had the highest concentration of chloroparaffin, a highly toxic petrochemical classified as a probable human carcinogen. In fact, according to researchers, a majority of Italian lemon essential oils had substantial traces of chloroparaffin in the 102 samples tested (Di Bella et al., 2000). Young Living's lemon oil is currently sourced from Florida and passed the pesticide residue assay.

Q. Can I still use the term therapeutic-grade? There are new oils in the marketplace marked CPTG, or certified pure therapeutic-grade, and they say it's protected. What are my rights?

A. You are fine to use the term therapeutic-grade to promote Young Living oils, but we suggest using Young Living therapeutic-grade standard. Young Living is the company that initially defined the term therapeutic-grade and made it desirable but any company or individual can by law use the term therapeutic-grade to describe their oils. Do not confuse the term "therapeutic-grade" or any similar term or mark commonly paraded in the essential oils marketplace with the Young Living therapeutic-grade standard. Young Living is the only mark that ensures an oils therapeutic potency.

Q. Do you test every lot of oil?

A. We test every single lot of oil, whether from our own farms or from a trusted qualified supplier. Each essential oil is subjected to state-of-the-art chemical analysis at the Young Living chemistry lab. Biochemist Sue Chao and her team of scientists subjects every essential oil to a battery of tests including gas chromatography, GC/MS, heavy metals analysis, and other advanced assays. If it passes our Young Living therapeutic-grade standard, the oil is removed from quarantine and nitrogen-packed in special sealed containers until it is bottled.

The ultimate protection against adulteration is to visit the farms and distillation facilities around the world and watch the oils being distilled, taking samples directly from the separator to be stored as a reference in the Young Living quality control labs.

Q. Why does Young Living not disclose its test results on each batch of oil?

A. At one time, Young Living issued oil analyses to distributors by request. Unfortunately, some competitors and suppliers began using this information to copy our standards and create "composite oils" by spiking natural oils with isolated constituents to make them appear to meet Young Living's therapeutic-grade standards. These oils would then be advertised "as good as Young Living."

Again, oils that meet the Young Living therapeutic-grade standard for purity and potency must achieve that status through careful cultivation and preparation not by alteration, adulteration, or ultra-refinement.

Q. Has YL quality changed over the last six or twelve months?

A. As the world leader, we expect our quality to constantly improve. Young Living has developed and refined its quality standards over fourteen years, and is continually updating these practices to reflect the latest research. In our quest for constant improvement, we will always incorporate quality improvements into our oil distillation and standards as well as introducing new therapeutic-grade essential oils such as dorado azul and blue eucalyptus. The same quest for excellence occurs with our supplements. Old formulas are constantly being updated and improved using improved raw materials and manufacturing technologies. The new Manna Bar and Power Meal are prime examples of these efforts. Excellence demands eternal vigilance.

Q. Does Young Living use outside, independent labs?

A. Frequently Young Living uses world-class independent labs to confirm in-house analysis. We also occasionally send oils out for special advanced tests such as carbon isotope analysis. Most of our day-to-day essential oil chemical assays are conducted at the Young Living chemistry lab in Springville, Utah, which houses a collection of some of the most advanced analytical instruments available for dissecting the composition of an essential oil.

We have learned that most independent labs are "generalists," testing everything from pesticides to plastics, and do not have the experience or the extensive chemical libraries to analyze complex aromatic compounds such as essential oils. Lavender oil, for example, has more than 152 different components, but most labs have the capability of identifying only half a dozen of these. In contrast, using Young Living's GC/MS system and extensive chemical library, Sue Chao and her staff can identify dozens and dozens of distinct chemical components of the lavender oil, even identifying compounds that only occur in very small amounts.

Q. Has Young Living "burned bridges" with some suppliers?

A. Young Living is fanatical about demanding only the best essential oils that meet our true "therapeutic-grade" standard, and thus we reject 72 percent of all oil samples. Lower quality suppliers may be offended that Young Living cannot compromise its quality standards and buy their oils; we do not make apologies for this. While we treat all suppliers respectfully, we often have to tell suppliers we cannot purchase their product when it does not meet our therapeutic-grade standard. Occasionally, when we receive inferior oils from the same "repeat offenders," we sometimes choose to exclude them from our selection process.

Q. Is Young Living all about Gary Young and his personal interests?

A. Young Living Essential Oils is and will always be about providing and promoting the world's finest, most therapeutic essential oils. As the first line of our mission statement boldly declares.
"We honor our stewardship to champion, nature's living energy, essential oils."

As the Founder and President of Young Living and the world's foremost essential oil expert, Gary Young carries an immeasurable and important part of this stewardship, and thanks in large part to his tireless efforts this, is expanding far beyond any one individual. Everyone who knows Gary knows that he wouldn't want it any other way. Gary is quick to point out that each person who is blessed by the oils now carries a piece of this stewardship and Young Living's rapidly expanding distributor force of more than 150,000 strong is the force carrying this mission to the world.

Q. Why is Gary Young in Ecuador?

A. Gary is in Ecuador personally spearheading the founding of Finca Botanica Aromatica, Young Living's newest and grandest farm. As with each farm, the intent is to discover and cultivate essential oils and further research their use and application. Gary has already identified vast numbers of new essential oils and begun their cultivation. With its mild year-round growing season and mineral rich volcanic soils, Ecuador is an ideal location for growing large supplies of essential oils. Gary and Mary are intensively involved in the Ecuador operations but remain US citizens and still spend a significant portion of the year living in the United States.

Q. I would like to come back to Young Living. I left recently to go with a different company but have found results with their products to be less than advertised. Am I still welcome?

A. We welcome you back with open arms. We find the few who have left returning with more appreciation, loyalty and enthusiasm for Young Living than ever. We sympathize with those who test the waters with another company and are disappointed with what they find. We are confident you will find your sponsor ready and willing to give you the support and guidance you need and you'll find our products are better than ever.

Q. What kind of growth is Young Living experiencing? Where are they headed?

A. Since Gary appointed Doug Nelson as Chief Operating Officer (COO), Doug has emphasized a renewed focus on Young Living's mission with essential oils, strategic planning, and focus. Record-breaking months, a world-class convention, and terrific momentum have been the result. As the world leader in essential oils, we honor our stewardship to champion nature's living energy, essential oils, and hope to inspire individuals to wellness, purpose and abundance. Our vision is to take essential oils into every home in the world! With fourteen impressive years of experience on our resume, Young Living is poised for unprecedented growth and expansion. This mission and vision has enabled Young Living to
. Double in size over the last five years
. Grow rapidly in all markets including the United States, Japan, Australia, and the UK
. Ship 800,000 orders to ninety-nine different countries annually
. Enroll 150,000 and growing distributors globally
. Cultivate four flourishing Young Living farms
. Build the most comprehensive historical research library on essential oils
. Launch innovative essential oil delivery like our essential oil softgels and newly launched essential oil roll-ons
. Intensively explore the lush forests of South America in search of new essential oil treasures
. Renew countless lives

We hope this has been informative and encourage you if you have further questions or need further support please contact your Regional Director or Regional Account Manager. We appreciate being in business with all of you as we take Young Living Essential Oils into every home on the planet.

Yours in Wellness, Purpose and Abundance,

The Young Living Team
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