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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 10:06 pm 
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I just sent an email inquiry about purchasing loose rooibos in 20 kg amounts. The company is on the opposite coast to me, but even with shipping the cost per pound is pretty cheap compared to anything else i have found. My intention is to repackage it and let folks buy in smaller bulk amounts.

Right now all I can find are Earl Gray tea bags- 20 bags = 1.4 ounces and I use a minimal 5/week on 75 gals. But soon will be almost doubling that.Those 20 bags cost over $3 a box

I have 3 three choices: Superior Grade, Organic Superior or Classic Fine cut. Any thoughts on which is the better choice. The first is 13% less than either of the other two.

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 10:15 pm 
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With organic you minimize the chances for pesticides etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 11:44 am 
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I have heard back from the company and they should be giving a quoted with shipping for 20 kilos of the organic. When i have it I will post in the MarketPlace forum. it should be cheap to ship as it will easily fit in something that is priced based on all that can fit.

I have been using tea bag,s so I will have to figure out "dosing" and preparation. I assume just throw it into a pot of boiling water, use a teapot or one of those tea balls to brew it will all work.

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Sun May 26, 2013 5:43 pm 
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Sorry guys for such a late response. Work has picked up very much (Thank God!)... but I will try to keep track of things here more.

The fact that fish get more feisty and show better appetite is product of feeling less stressed and this allows them to behave more naturally. So there we see the first benefit of this very nice ingredient Dirk has brought to the scene.

In my case, I change about 20% water weekly. I add the blackwater ingredients usually monthly, though for the last three months I've been working on getting my water really clear after a slight bacterial or algal bloom that was giving me a bit of a cloudy water issue. My water is now back to crystal clear quality and fish are eating well.

Ed

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 7:04 pm 
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I have been doing about 40% weekly water changes and new water always has some rooibos and Kent Black water expert. I change the cattapas every other week and the alder cones I replenish when they seem to have dissolved enough to need more. I am using 5 teabags a week for 2 tanks holding a total of roughly 70-75 gals. I will be moving up the gals very soon.

The rooibos is much easier than the other things and I find it lets me use less of all of them than I might otherwise.

I am agonizing over what to get- the superior cut or the organic.

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:07 pm 
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Chris, get a hold of Dirk and ask him, if anyone can help with a solid answer is him. I think I have the organic and the cut is about the size of coarse coffee to give you an idea.
I don't think there should be any difference if you buy organic or regular, this is because rooibos only grows in a small area on the coast of South Africa and from what I have read, attempts to cultivate it elsewhere have failed mainly do do its dependency of symbiosis with other living microorganisms which are also endemic to its habitat.
I'm sure wiki and Dirk will fill you in. I don't think they use pesticides or selective herbicides, but I'll bet my BP our man in SA will know!
Ed

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:09 pm 
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I ran out of catappa, so for now I am relying solely on rooibos and peat, as well as some of the commercial stuff (Kent or Tetra BW). My wife downs the rooibos faster than the fish!
Ed

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 11:34 am 
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HI Everyone,

I apologize for not replying, I have been meaning to reply, but then some other thread has come up and I have replied there, but seeing that I come from South Africa and rooibos tea is grown in vast quantities about 200 km from me, I am the one that can give you a lot more information. Rooibos tea (red bush is what the name means in Afrikaans, which is derived from Dutch originally, but that is another story), well you would pronounce it as in the English name "roy" and bos as in the English "boss" for your employer!

The plant has got nothing to do with traditional tea. Traditional tea comes from the plant Camellia sinensis from China which is a plant in the plant family Rosaceae, in other words related to roses. Well Rooibos is made from the plant, Aspalathus linearis, which is a legume belonging to the plant family Fabaceae, in other words related to beans and peas.

I would advise that you read the Wikipedia version of Aspalathus linearis on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rooibos. You will see that they write:

"Rooibos is becoming more popular in Western countries, particularly among health-conscious consumers, due to its high level of antioxidants such as aspalathin and nothofagin, its lack of caffeine, and its low tannin levels compared to fully oxidized black tea or unoxidized green tea leaves. Rooibos also contains a number of phenolic compounds, including flavanols, flavones, flavanones, and dihydrochalcones."

This is the important part in that for fishkeeping we are interested in the plant phenolic compounds which act as antioxidants, and at the same time that act as antibacterial components. We have had a lot of discussions in the past about the benefits of humic acids on altum keeping and humic acids are the same as plant phenolics, so this is what everyone has been using already. Oak leaves contain a lot of the plant phenolic called quercetin (derived from the Latin name for the oak tree, Quercus robur) and rooibos also contains some quercetin and the compound aspalathin, which is closely related to quercetin.

Other benefits that are coming from research conducted by colleagues of mine in the Biochemistry Department at the University of Stellenbosch, that I work in, are that rooibos has natural stress relieving properties and we all know that altums are exposed to significant stress during transport and during initial adaptation to aquariums. I can inform you from my knowledge in the immunology field that stress inhibits the ability of the immune system to fight disease, so if you can reduce stress, then that would have major advantages for the immune system thereby fighting disease.

So, rooibos tea potentially has major advantages for fishkeeping, but Ed, for your wife and you, it also has major advantages for you as well!

So, I would like to reemphasize that it is entirely safe to use and has major advantages for humans and fish alike. The "organic" label is actually almost unnecessary as the tea is grown without the use of insecticides and herbicides, they are just simply not necessary as this plant grows under natural surroundings.

The bush is more like a broom than a bush and the top of the bush is just simply cut off, dried and fermented before packing into tea bags or sold as tea in the same way as English tea is sold.

The production of this tea has benefited poor communities in South Africa in a major way and your support in buying this tea makes a contribution to community upliftment in South Africa. Have a look at this: http://www.wupperthal.co.za/index.html , I have been to this little settlement often and it really amazes me.

So the bottom line is use it for your fishes and for yourself for your own major benefit, as well as benefiting the producers in my country.

Kind regards,

Dirk

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Last edited by Dirk Bellstedt on Mon Jun 17, 2013 12:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 1:38 pm 
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Dirk- Thanks for all the good info. I do have one question. I can get either superior grade or fine cut. The latter costs more and I assume is more akin to what would be in a tea bag. However, if it is to be brewed for tank use, would it matter if I get the superior grade?

I want others to be able to share in the wholesale pricing, so I prefer not to spend money if it is not needed.

Thanks-

Chris L.

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 10:45 pm 
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Hi Chris,

I would expect that the fine cut would have a better taste, but that the phenolics content would be much the same. So I would get the superior grade, I am sure that will be just fine.

Kind regards,

Dirk

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Fri Jun 14, 2013 7:56 am 
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Thanks Dirk. I am not a huge tea drinker, so I am a tea bag person rather than one who brews loose. I wasn't sure of there would be a difference in going from the dried tra to the brewed because of cuts.

I will email the company to invoice me for the superior and would expect it for arrive in a week to 10 days. Any members in the USA who are interested can PM me about getting some. Shipping for upt to 3/4 of a lb can be doen via 1st class mail I think for a couple of dollars. Over 12 oz has to go priority and that will run about $5.80 for a fixed price box. If there seems to be enough demand I can start doing the online postage stuff and proably get another 50 cents off the priority box. I will investigate further now that I know I can order.

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Sun Jun 16, 2013 1:50 pm 
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Hey Chris, just wanted to let you know that my big bag (almost gone, I guess we are using it more than my altum!) is NOT ORGANIC, just the regular.

Last night I wrapped some (rooibos) with sphagnum peat moss in a fine mesh bag that my wife made for the purpose and I simply put it in one of the overflow boxes. You gotta see how nice the water and the fish look today. I'll try to take a pic in a bit.

You're not a big tea drinker and not that I am, but try some of this stuff with a bit of honey and cinnamon... even alone it tastes really good... in my opinion it has a much better natural flavor that that of most other real (normal) teas (non flavored).

Ed

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Sun Jun 16, 2013 6:29 pm 
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I am one of the few people out there I think who dislikes the taste of honey. I have tried over the years to learn to like it, to no avail. I would rather use maple syrup :-)

I will let the fish have my share of the stuff.

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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Sun Jun 16, 2013 7:40 pm 
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TwoTankAmin wrote:
I am one of the few people out there I think who dislikes the taste of honey. I have tried over the years to learn to like it, to no avail. I would rather use maple syrup :-)

I will let the fish have my share of the stuff.


OK, I'll try the maple syrup!

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God listens. He may not always give you everything you want, when you want it; but he always gives you what you really need, when you need it most!
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 Post subject: Re: Rooibos tea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:49 pm 
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I now have 20 kilos of rooibos sitting in my living room. Went with the superior as advised.

Hmmm- I have a large in ground pool, maybe put a heater on it and I can brew the worlds larges cup of tea.....

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