Westpoint has been a proud local supplier of whole, natural and organic foods for 25 years. We take pride in our wholesome products, but we are more than just a business. We are also health nerds who like to educate and spread the message on healthy eating! Our ultimate goal is for customers to enjoy our products without any doubts. This post is designed to answer some of our most frequent customer inquiries that we receive quite often. If you have other questions you wish to inquire about, please don’t hesitate to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Is your Baking Soda aluminum-free?
Yes. Our Baking Soda is mined from natural deposits and is naturally aluminum-free. We decided to remove the “no aluminum” statement from our Baking Soda label to avoid any misinterpretation that being aluminum-free is a special quality of our product. Our Baking Soda is still the same and it contains no aluminum.
The presence of aluminum, however, may be an issue for Baking Powder. Some Baking Powder brands may use an aluminum compound as the acid ingredient in their formulas. Westpoint’s Baking Powder is aluminum-free. We also carry a Wheat & Corn Free Baking Powder, an aluminum-free option for those with corn sensitivity.
What is the difference between Brown Flax and Golden Flax?
Brown and Golden Flax have a very similar nutrition profile with only a small difference in Omega-3 fatty acid contents. Brown Flax contains approximately 22% Omega-3, slightly higher than Golden Flax at 20%. You can use both interchangeably in recipes depending on personal preference. Golden Flax may be easier to sneak into recipes because of its neutral colour.
Are there different varieties of Cinnamon?
Yes, there are a few varieties of Cinnamon. We carry both the cinnamomum cassia as well as the cinnamomum zeylanicum which is also known as Ceylon Cinnamon.
What is the difference between regular Nutritional Yeast and Vegetarian Support Nutritional Yeast?
Our Vegetarian Support Nutritional Yeasts are fortified with Vitamin B12, while our regular Nutritional Yeasts are not. Vitamin B12 is primarily obtained from animal sources. Hence, being Vitamin B12-deficient is quite common among vegetarians and vegans. B12 is important for a healthy nervous system, food metabolism, and the regeneration of red blood cells.
The B12 in our Vegetarian Support formula is obtained through natural fermentation. It does not come from a synthetic process or an animal source.
Is the frosted appearance on your Prunes, Dates, Figs and Apricots a sign of spoilage?
No. The frosted appearance is typically the effects of naturally arising sugar. It does not indicate spoilage. However, if the surface looks hairy, it could be a sign of mold growth. Our prunes, dates, figs and unsulphured apricots are free from additives, which make them more sensible to moisture and temperature variations. For the best product freshness, we recommend storing them in cool dry areas.
Is Tapioca Flour the same as Tapioca Starch?
Yes. Tapioca Flour and Tapioca Starch is the same product but you should not confuse it with Cassava Flour. Tapioca is a starch extracted from the cassava root through washing and pulping. On the other hand, Cassava Flour is the whole root – simply peeled, dried and ground.
Do your Pine Nuts come from Pinus armandii, the species associated with “pine mouth”?
No. We share our customers’ concern about “pine mouth” and will continue to monitor the results of any scientific testing to ensure that our Pine Nuts are the highest quality available.
What is the difference between Turmeric Root and Turmeric Powder?
Turmeric Root and Turmeric Powder differ only in appearance and uses. The root is simply small pieces of the dried turmeric root, while the powder is its ground form. Turmeric Root is mainly used in tea because it steeps better and can be easily drained afterwards. Turmeric Powder, on the other hand, is more commonly used for culinary purposes. Check out some of our favourite things about turmeric here.
Is your Epsom Salt food grade?
Yes. All our products are food grade. You can consume our Epsom Salt internally or in baths. It can act as a laxative for constipation relief if ingested.
Do your Raisins have added oil to it?
Our Organic Sultana Raisins do contain sunflower oil to prevent clumping. Our Thompson Raisins, Organic Thompson Raisins, Currants, and Organic Currants do not.
Does your Monk Fruit Powder contain refined sugar?
No. Our Monk Fruit Powder is simply the ground form of dried Monk Fruit (Luo Han Guo). It is a single-ingredient product with no additives. It is unrefined and contains no sugar.
Do your Teas contain any caffeine?
Caffeine occurs naturally in “real teas” that come from the tea plant, Camellia sinensis. This includes our Green Tea, Jasmine Tea and Matcha. Herbal teas, unlike “real teas”, consist of herbs and usually do not contain caffeine. Some examples are Rooibos and Chamomile.
What grade is your Green Tea Matcha?
Our Grade A Organic Matcha Powder is of the culinary grade. It is perfect for making matcha lattes, frappes, ice cream and smoothies. Learn more about how it is harvested on our blog here.
What types of Matcha Powders do you carry?
We carry Grade A Organic Matcha Powder that is harvested by hand once a year, typically in the spring.
In 2021, we brought in our Matcha Red Tea Powder. It is hand-picked in women-run cooperative of micro-farms and made from micro-milled hibiscus flowers (hibiscus sabdariffa) that are harvested in the evening and early morning hours (before dawn) since the hibiscus flowers produce the most aroma and flavour during that time. Read more here.
Our Blue Matcha Powder is made from micro-milled Butterfly Pea Flowers. Our Butterfly Pea Flower is also sourced from a women-run cooperative of micro-farms, where it is hand-picked and sun-dried. Read more here.
Is your Safflower the same as American Saffron?
Yes. American Saffron is also known as Safflower. However, please do not confuse it with Persian Saffron. They are two different products and will not yield the same flavour. To avoid any misinterpretation, we now refer American Saffron as Safflower. The product is still the same.
Why don’t you print a best before date on your products?
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) only requires a best before date on perishable products with a durable life of less than 90 days. All our products are dried, which can be stored at room temperature from 6 months to 2 years without any loss of quality.
Instead, we have implemented a lot numbering system to reflect the date when a product is packaged. The lot # you see on the back label is in DD/MM/YYYY format. To tell how fresh the products are, please see below for their optimal shelf lives:
- 6 months: Nuts, seeds, whole grain flours, grain flakes, other high-fat products. *Refrigeration is recommended to extend shelf life.
- 12 months: Dried fruits & vegetables, light or white flours, whole grains.
- 24 months: Legumes, white rice, herbs, spices, sweeteners, salt mixes, teas.
How do you avoid cross-contamination of allergens?
We store and package all our allergenic products in segregated areas, and keep them in sealed containers. Our products are packaged by hand without the assistance of machines, so there is no complicated equipment that can be easily-contaminated. Between every item, we clean and sanitize all packing surfaces before packaging the next item. Each product also has its own scoops.
In addition, we opened our gluten free facility in 2014, which is separated from other packaging areas. Our gluten free products are handled with great care and we do our best to make our products safe for everyone. View our list of gluten free products here.
What is the blueish hue on my Organic Rye Flakes, is it mold?
The colour of Rye Kernels can range from a yellowish-brown to a greenish-blue colour. When rolled, the flakes would share the same colour variation. We have attached some photos of the products that we have on hand for comparison.
You can visit our FAQ for more answers regarding our products and policies!