Elderberries have been used traditionally for centuries! They are shown to be used for their protective and healing properties throughout history and are being studied by modern scientists for these same reasons.
We currently source our elderberries from Bulgaria and the Ukraine (depending on availability). Although elderberries can be found in North America as well, there is a long and documented history of Europe sources producing top-quality pharmaceutical grade elderberries. Most European nations have tighter regulations regarding herbicides and pesticides then the United States, thus leading to healthier and cleaner soil. (4)
The nutrient rich soil in these ares provides a foundation for elderberries that are highest in flavonoid compounds called anthocyanins (elderberries actually contain nearly DOUBLE the amount of anthocyanins that any other fruit). These compounds provide an extremely high level of antioxidants which can help support out immune systems when consumed. (3)
Elderberries can be found throughout history for millenniums.
Seeds from elderberries were found in dwellings from the Neolithic era in Switzerland, meaning that the plant was likely cultivated by about 2000 B.C.E. and the medicinal properties of elderberries were well known by 77 C.E. (as is evident in Pliny the Elder’s book Natural History). (5)
In the Middle Ages elderberry was considered a Holy Tree, capable of restoring good health, keeping good health, and as an aid to longevity. (2) All parts of the elderberry plant are considered a valuable healing plant in many folk and native medicine traditions (Hutchens 1991, Walker et al. 1993; Barrett et al. 1933; Clarke 1977). Hippocrates referred to elderberry as “nature’s medicine chest”, for it's wide range of use! (5)
Elderberries have been clinically studied and are shown to be effective! Used for it's antioxidant activity to help lessen severity (or even eradicate) coughs, colds, flu, bacterial and viral illness, sinus infections, and seasonal allergies. It even successfully treated a flu pandemic in Panama in 1995. (1) Elderberries may also lower cholesterol, improve vision, boost the immune system, and improve heart health.
In conclusion, these little berries are PACKED with beneficial properties. They have been used throughout a good portion of human history and continue to amaze use with their versatile healing properties and delicious taste!
Feel free to check out these links to learn more!