Don Stock, CEO of American Botanicals, wants the word to get out to everyone. “Money does grow on trees,” he mentioned during a recent interview.

It may seem like an incredible statement, but Stock’s company collects over 350 plants for nutriceutical purposes (as opposed to man-made pharmaceuticals) as well as for everyday cooking and involvement in natural health programs.  Among the many plants and plant pieces that the company collects are black walnuts, golden seal, milk thistle, St John’s wort, sassafras, ginseng, Mayapple, and even poison ivy.

Collectors can make big bucks if they know what to look for and where to find specified plants.  It’s also important to talk to the American Botanicals folks to find out what is currently needed in the factory.  

Angela Grimmett

Angela Grimmett, quality control specialist, tests tap density in samples at American Botanicals.

American Botanicals seeks to provide an income stream for people who live in rural areas.  Not only can collectors be rewarded, but those who are on the payroll enjoy generous salaries and health benefits.  Mr. Stock prides his company with bringing income to the local citizenry.  However, gathering plants does not stop at the border of Missouri.  Indeed, the CEO spends much time in Appalachia where 83% of domestic botanicals are harvested.

Botanical products are imported and sold worldwide.  Currently, the company tallies about $25 million in sales.  In the Eolia processing factory, plant matter is screened for quality, processed into powder, and screened yet again.  Important factors maintained in the quality control lab are moisture content, particle size, and quantity in packaging.

The tradition of harvesting wild plants began as far back as fur-trading times in the early days.  During the “off season,” traders continued to create income for themselves by collecting plants that they could sell or trade for needed goods.  Amazingly enough, the botanical trend is bursting at the seams now as millenials as well as persons of all ages look toward Nature to provide healthy antidotes and maintenance treatments.

CEO Stock, a welcoming individual, is definitely a “people person” who feeds his own need to interact with people and Nature, and to travel throughout the world.  Any individuals who choose to accept Don Stock’s offer of collecting plants for profit will want to contact the American Botanicals office (573-485-2300) to learn about Missouri Department of Conservation regulations and the plants needed for processing during each season.

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