Every year, Mitch Coven, owner of Vitality Works Private Label Company, invites health food store staff from around the country to Albuquerque, New Mexico to tour his facility and learn more about the company. I eagerly accepted the offer to represent A Market at this year’s event.
Mitch and the folks from Vitality Works welcomed us with a reception dinner. Over a delicious Indian buffet, we all mingled in a collective buzz of anticipation over what we’d share in the next two days. In a whirl of excitement and exhaustion from a long day of travel, I retired to my hotel room, eager for the next day to begin.
We arrived at the Vitality Works facility wide-eyed and full of anticipation. On the way down to the building, I noticed the walkway was lined with medicinal herbs marked by little plaques that read “goldenrod”, “hops”, “wormwood”, and “pleurisy root”. I couldn’t wait to discover what else these grounds held, to see up close these herbs I’ve only read about, and whose names I’ve seen on product labels. Mitch spoke for a couple of hours about his passion for herbal medicine and maintaining the highest quality standards for his company’s products.
We learned that Vitality Works was born in 1982 out of Mitch’s desire to give people alternatives to western medicine. Eastern medicine, he reminded us, focuses on finding and treating the root cause of a disease or ailment, bringing the body back into balance with herbs and other healing modalities, instead of just alleviating or masking the symptoms. Mitch and his team worked tirelessly to refine the herbal extracts and compounds that bear the Vitality Works label.
The next morning we traveled two hours north to the town of Abiquiu, home to famed artist Georgia O’Keefe, and spent the day at the Abiquiu Valley Biodynamic Farm. The farm is surrounded by beautiful, clay colored mountains and lush greenery. Many of the herbs used in Vitality Works products are sourced directly from this farm. We learned about biodynamic farming, a holistic, ecologically sound, and ethical approach to growing food. We got to see, touch, and taste various herbs as we learned about their histories and uses.
Mitch’s passion for these herbs and their healing properties grew ever more apparent, and contagious, as we sat under a large tree overlooking the farm, willing students of his live herbal class. This day highlighted one of the company’s missions, to source products as locally and sustainably as possible.
Leaving New Mexico I reflected on my rejuvenated passion for herbal remedies. As I walk through the aisles of our supplements department, I feel a great sense of confidence in recommending our private label products to consumers. I know that we are offering the highest quality products to assist people on their path to wellness.
-Melissa Bourdelais, A Market Natural Foods