Where Can I Buy Your Products? Are They Available Online?
We do not sell our products online, but they can be found nationwide, in natural foods stores and conventional grocery stores. Our Store Finder will help you locate the nearest store provider. If your favorite grocery store doesn’t sell our products, you can request that they do, using this Product Request Form! If you live in the San Francisco Bay Area, you can also find us at local Farmers’ Markets.
Do Your Products Contain Any Alcohol?
There actually is a very small amount of alcohol produced during lactic acid fermentation as a byproduct of the bacteria, but it is negligible. One study states that there is usually between 0.1% to 0.3% alcohol.
Are Your Products Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Non-GMO?
Do Your Products Have to be Refrigerated?
The live cultures found in our Kraut and Gut Shot need food in order to stay alive. Refrigeration reduces the rate at which the live cultures metabolize residual sugars from the vegetables, extending the vibrancy and shelf-life considerably. So, to ensure the potency and get the maximum benefits of the probiotics, we strongly recommend refrigeration of those products (before and after opening).
How Long Will Your Products Last in the Refrigerator?
There is a best-by date on the pouch or bottle that you should refer to. Our products are good for a very long time when refrigerated, regardless of being opened or not, due to the fact that they are so naturally acidified from the fermentation process.
What Probiotic Strains are Cultured in Your Products?
DUE TO THE NATURE OF WILD FERMENATION, THE BACTERIA STRAINS VARY BATCH TO BATCH. The following good bacterial strains are commonly found in our products:
Lactobacillus pentosus/plantarum, which has been shown to improve immune function.
Lactobacillus paraplantarum, which can help inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria.
Lactobacillus koreensis, which may have cholesterol reducing abilities.
Lactobacillus brevis, which can help keep good bacteria growing in your gut.
Lactobacillus hammesii, which can promote antifungal activity.
What are Probiotics?
Probiotics are the beneficial bacteria your body needs to stay healthy. They live in you, around you, and in the food you eat. There are several benefits to adding probiotics to your diet and our always organic products can help keep your gut healthy!
What is a Microbiome?
A microbiome is the overall community of microscopic organisms that make up your gut. Your microbiome helps regulate your immune system, digestion, and more! The healthier you keep your microbiome, the healthier you become!
What are the Benefits of Eating Probiotics?
There are many! Stress, poor diet, medication, illness, aging, and excessive traveling can throw off the bacteria in your gut. Adding probiotics from fermented organic veggies to your diet can help with all of that.
Probiotics are good for:
Regulating your immune system.
Boosting energy by supporting a healthy metabolism.
Helping to absorb vitamins and minerals.
Improving overall digestion.
Aiding in brain and mood functions.
What’s the Difference Between Good Bacteria and Bad Bacteria?
Good bacteria actually benefits it’s environment (your gut), while bad bacteria or pathogenic bacteria wreaks havoc. Bad bacteria can cause problems ranging from cognitive issues to extreme illness. Probiotics are protective against bad bacteria by weakening the pathogens and, in turn, strengthening your immune system! Why wouldn’t you want more probiotics?
Can You Have Too Many Probiotics?
It’s very hard to eat “too many” probiotics, since your body is home to trillions of bacteria. We recommend you start one or two servings of Kraut or Gut Shot at first, so that your body can naturally adjust to the influx of good bacteria. If you have an immune-related illness, we suggest you check in with your doctor before making any changes to your diet.
Are the Probiotics From Supplements the Same as Those in Probiotic-Rich Foods?
Probiotic supplements and probiotics from fermented foods are alike in that they both contain a similar amount of beneficial bacteria. They are different because fermented foods contain several strands of naturally occurring (vs. fixed) beneficial bacteria as well as dietary fiber and vitamins (B & K).
At Farmhouse Culture, we believe in the power of probiotics from organic and fermented food!
Are Some Food Sources of Probiotics Better Than Others?
The bacteria found on organic veggies are similar to what’s already in your gut (see question “what is a microbiome?”). That means eating or drinking probiotics made through fermenting premium ingredients, such as cabbage, beets, and other flavorful veggies, can only strengthen what’s already going on in your gut!
What are Prebiotics?
Prebiotics are carbohydrates that are both high in fiber and non-digestible. Even though they’re non-digestible, prebiotics are the preferred “food” for your good gut bacteria. We use prebiotics to make our kraut, which is the base of all our products. For example, onions, garlic, cucumbers, peppers, and beets are all prebiotics!
Will Cooking or Freezing Your Products Kill the Probiotics?
Cooking or heating sauerkraut does reduce the number of live probiotics. For that reason, our products are always raw and unpasteurized. Some strains of live bacteria will go into a dormant state if frozen, and will return to an active state after being thawed or eaten, while frozen storage can cause a reduction in the counts of some bacterial strains.
What’s the Difference Between Fermentation and Pickling?
Pickling is the act of preserving a food in a brine (like salt or salt water) or acid (like vinegar). A fermented food, on the other hand, has been preserved by live bacteria cultures, which can produce a brine or acid as a byproduct of the fermentation process. Pickled foods don’t generally provide the live probiotics that most fermented foods offer.
Are all Fermented Foods Sources of Probiotics?
Not necessarily. While the fermentation process is carried out by live bacteria, for the food to be considered a source of probiotics, the bacteria must remain alive until the point of consumption in order to provide a health benefit. Processes like pasteurization and heat application can kill probiotics, so make sure to check food labels for language like “live, active cultures,” the strains of which should be listed as well.
What are Some Ways to Use Your Products?
Fermented foods go well with basically everything, in our opinion! Our Krauts and Fermented Vegetables are great on sandwiches, in wraps or quesadillas, and as a topping for things like scrambled eggs and omelets, deviled eggs, salads, served with bratwurst – or just straight out of the pouch. Likewise, our Gut Shots are great right out of the bottle, but you can also mix them into cocktails and smoothies, or turn your favorite flavor into salad dressing!
Can I Make My Own Sauerkraut, or Other Fermented Foods, and Still Get The Benefits of Probiotics?
Yes, you can! There are many great resources available, but some of our favorite books on the subject include Fermentation for Beginners, The Essential Book of Fermentation, and The Art of Fermentation.
Is it Okay to Consume Raw Kraut and Other Fermented Foods When Pregnant or Breastfeeding?
As with anything you eat or drink when pregnant, you should first get the go-ahead from your doctor. That said, all the studies that we have read on the subject agree that it is safe and healthy to eat raw sauerkraut and other fermented foods while pregnant; in fact, the probiotics, fiber, vitamins and other nutrients in our Kraut and Fermented Vegetables can offer a host of health benefits to you and baby.
Are Fermented Foods Safe for Infants and Toddlers?
It is always best to consult with your doctor before introducing new foods into your baby’s diet, but all the studies we’ve seen on the subject confirm that fermented foods are not just safe, but a healthy addition to the diets of infants and toddlers. Breast milk is actually full of beneficial bacteria that will make up your child’s gut bacteria population. Live culture foods can not only provide your baby with healthy, easily digestible nutrients and probiotics, but when introduced early, they can help familiarize your child’s palate so they will continue to love probiotic-rich foods later in life!
Do You Use Starter Cultures?
We do not add any starter culture. Our products are naturally fermented, which means all the bacteria come to us on the vegetables.