Rome wasn’t built in a day. It took thousands of years to build the Eternal City—Romulus even killed his own brother because they couldn’t agree on where Rome should be located. Just a mere couple millennia later, biddies flock across the globe to get a pic with the Colosseum, making Rome one of the most sought after tourist destinations in the world. It turns out Romulus was onto something: putting your blood, sweat, and tears into something something really does make a city hit different.

Luckily, we don’t have to off anybody or anything to build our Rome. But our practice is no easy feat. Renude’s process is another ball game, one that involves less blood, sweat, and tears and more time, labor, and patience (thanks to an extremely tedious method of extraction, but more on this in a bit). 

Chaga can’t be harvested from the birch tree and immediately munched on. Nope, not how it works. The compounds of the chaga mushroom must be carefully extracted and dehydrated or else they lose all their valuable nutrients and health benefits. We’re talking no adaptogens, no vitamins, and no antioxidants.

There are two ways in which you can extract the chaga from its mother birch and transform it into powder: freeze drying and chemical spraying. One requires (you guessed it) freezing the chaga dry in order to maintain the nutrients, while the other relies on spraying the chaga with chemicals in extremely hot temperatures. This depletes the plant of its health benefits. 

Renude didn’t feel right about the latter. There was something about putting chemicals on food we consume that didn’t sit right in our stomachs, so we explored the other option. Freeze drying is like every middle schoolers relationship status on Facebook in 2007: complicated. It’s a labor-intensive process with many steps. Our chaga is 100% wild-foraged (no lab grown hoo-ha), but what happens after the hunt is where things really start to get tricky.

Excuse us while we go Bill Nye on you for a second.

First, we extract the nutrients from the chaga mushroom through pressurized water. This allows us to break down the chaga’s walls and tap into the stuff that makes chaga so goddamn good for you. Then, we take this liquid concoction of mega nutrients and transform it into solids using an evaporation process. From here, we freeze-dry the solids in order to create stable extracts.

Unlike chemical spraying, freeze drying keeps the highest amount of nutrients intact, keeping the chaga mushroom true to its core. It keeps the chaga fresh and clean, tasting just as good as it is for you. Without this tedious extraction process, we’d be left with a pile of chaga dust, dust that tastes like taking the easy way out. 

We didn’t choose to freeze-dry our products because we wanted quick and easy. We chose to freeze-dry our product because we want to rep the best stuff on the block. You wouldn’t pay forty bucks for stale weed, would you? Neither would we. That’s why we’ll keep doing things the hard way, so that you can enjoy it the easy way. Whatever that way may be—chilling on your fire escape, sprawled out in your undies, poolside or bedside—we hope you can taste our spirit.