Rooibos is a natural herb grown only in South Africa, being endemic to the Cederberg Region of the Western Cape province. Its leaves have been used traditionally by the locals to make a refreshing brew, which became known as Rooibos Tea. The name Rooibos (red bush) is derived from the reddish colour of the fermented leaves.
Rooibos Tea is caffeine-free and low in tannins and contains abundant anti-oxidants. It has established itself worldwide as a popular health-promoting alternative for coffee and tea.
Alternatives for Rooibos Tea in its regular form, include variously flavoured or blended teas, and recent product innovations such as an espresso format and Green Rooibos Tea. The latter consists of unfermented Rooibos, lighter in colour and with even higher levels of antioxidants than regular Rooibos Tea. Rooibos is also extensively used in skincare and household products.
Health Benefits of Rooibos
- Contains Antioxidants
- Naturally Caffeine-free
- Naturally sugar-free
- Assists with Colic in infants
- Contains Cancer-fighting properties
- Promotes heart health
- Assists with Diabetes
- Low amount of Tannin
- Immune booster
- Can assist in soothing skin allergies
Rooibos (Aspalathus linearis), a member of the legume family of plants (Fabaceae), is endemic to the mountains of the Cederberg Range in South Africa.
As a Fynbos species, it forms part of the natural vegetation of the Cape Floral Kingdom, the smallest and richest of the world's floral kingdoms, and the only one that is confined to a single country.
Cape Floral Kingdom is part of the UNESCO World Heritage
It represents less than 0.5% of the area of Africa but is home to nearly 20% of the continent's flora. The outstanding diversity, density, and endemism of the flora are among the highest worldwide... The Cape Floral Region has been identified as one of the world's 35 biodiversity hotspots.
The Rooibos plant is a shrub-like bush with green needle-like leaves and can grow up to a height of 2m. Yellow flowers appear in spring, and the fruit is a small pod with one or two hard seeds.
Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) status for Rooibos
The European Commission has approved the registration of the designation ‘Rooibos’/’Red Bush’ in its register of protected designations of origin – PDO and protected geographical indications – GI, where it joins Champagne, Irish Whiskey, Porto, Queso Manchego, and other iconic products already registered.