In the microbiology section of our Spanish Fork, Utah, laboratory, quality control technicians test to ensure the purity of all Young Living products.
I will just briefly mention that the Research and Product Development departments work on the development and production of your products.
In the microbiology laboratory in Spanish Fork, Utah, we test to be sure there are no pathogens in your products to ensure their safety and quality. You know already about our tests of optical rotation, gas chromatography, and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry; we also do FTIR or NIR (Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy/Near Infrared) for identification.
Some of the testing is also done in Ecuador, and part of it is done in St. Maries, Idaho. Dr. Casabianca is a support for this testing. Dr. Mahmoud Suhail at the university in Salalah, Oman, does some of the testing there. Testing is also done at Oklahoma State University by HK Lin. It just goes on and on and on.
I would like to say a little more about optical rotation. This instrument analyzes whether an oil is dextrorotatory or a levorotatory, depending on which way light bends as it goes through the oil. If you know an oil is supposed to be dextro and it tests levo, then something is wrong! A GC doesn’t tell you the optical rotation. You have to have the polarimeter (also called a rotometer) to do that. We have that instrument here, and we have the instrument in Ecuador for doing the same thing.
You need to know we have a GC-MS in the lab in Ecuador and in Spanish Fork, Utah. We also have a GC in the lab in St. Maries.
Dr. Chin Chiang, Sr. lab scientist, and Marilyn Contreras-Pinegar, Quality Control manager, are standing proudly next to our new HPLC instrument.
There’s one room of the lab that has three GC’s and a mass spec in it. Here’s another room where Marilyn Contreras-Pinegear and Dr. Chin are standing next to the UPLC: Ultra Performance Liquid Chromatography instrument. You might also hear of UHPLC—Ultra High Pressure Liquid Chromatography. What’s different about that instrument? UPLC is the same thing as UHPLC, except for the fact that UPLC is the patented name for a Waters’ instrument.
The main differences between GC and LC is that GC uses a gas mobile phase, while LC uses a liquid mobile phase. Mobile phase refers to what is pushing the sample through the system. Another difference is that a GC focuses on light, volatile compounds, while LC focuses on heavier, larger compounds that don’t necessarily show up in a GC.
It’s taken me many years to get that instrument because it costs so much money. That one instrument cost over $100K. I didn’t need to do that. I could have taken a bonus. But yes, I did need to do it for each of you so that you know when I say your oil is pure, it’s not a guess and I’m not standing up here telling you a bunch of lies. It’s a fact. I’ve invested in your present and in your future.
All of this is just the analytical part where we carry out over nine different tests just on the analytical chemistry of the essential oils.
Brett Smith, research scientist, is seated at the GC-MS, where he performs essential oil analysis.
There’s Brett Smith sitting at the GC-MS. That’s the instrument that fragments our oils to allow us to identify every constituent in them.
Dr. Woolley is holding an optical rotometer, the scientific instrument that enabled YL to show that the species of B. carterii and B. sacra are not synonymous but are two distinct frankincense species.
I didn’t have enough room last week to add the names of all of the other laboratory personnel. They work in the microbiology department, ensuring that quality-control criteria are met and also doing microbiological studies on the oils to make sure your product is the high quality that you expect. We study every aspect of the oil, not just the analytical chemistry part.
Here are some of my staff’s qualifications. I want you to know who is behind analyzing your oils, who is supporting what we’re doing here. You folks have something to be proud of. You have something to believe in.
As I mentioned last week, Dr. Cole Woolley, PhD, is our VP of global science and essential oil research. He has 27 years of oil and plant chemistry analytical studies. Cole is the one who first noticed that constituents in Boswellia sacra and Boswellia carterii had different optical rotations. This allowed us to write an important study that was published in the prestigious Journal of Chromatography A in 2012.
My goodness, Dr. Woolley travels all over the world. I set up the project and then I send Cole in to implement the work. That’s why I’m able to get more done because while he’s in Taiwan finishing a project, I’m in Jericho starting another one. Now we’re in Egypt and in Peru, and I have men like Cole who can follow behind and support me in this work, and we just keep going and growing.
Gary Young’s Lab Team from left to right: Richard Carlson, PhD; Cole Woolley, PhD; Jamie Davis, mechanical engineer; D. Gary Young, ND; Marilyn Contreras-Pinegar, BS; Chin Chiang, PhD; Jerika Tilby, lab coordinator/Tech I; Brett Smith, BS.
Step No. 7: Laboratory Analysis and Research. Test for quality compound percentages. Identify new compounds and oils while looking for quality and adulteration in vendor oils.
Here’s my lab. That’s just part of my staff. Dr. Richard Carlson, PhD in analytical chemistry, director of research and development, has 25 years in analytical chemistry.
Dr. Cole Woolley, PhD, our VP of global science and essential oil research, has 27 years of oil and plant chemistry analytical studies.
Marilyn Contreras-Pinegar, quality control manager, has over 15 years of laboratory analytical work with GC’s and mass spec.
Dr. Chin Chiang, PhD, senior lab scientist, has 50 years as an analytical chemist for organic oils and plants.
Brett Smith is our analytical scientist who runs one of the GC’s. We have three GC’s in our laboratory.
Do I have an arsenal of people who know what they’re doing? There is not another lab in the world that is more well-equipped than the Young Living lab here in Utah.
This is Young Living’s distilling project located in Taiwan. Gary and Dr. Li are standing by the first distiller that was installed in September of 2012. A second distiller was installed there in April of 2013.
Here is our first distillery we put up last September in Taiwan; now we have two distilleries in Taiwan. How many of you like your Hong Kuai and Xiang Mao? Aren’t those beautiful oils! Oh, my goodness, yes. The gentleman with me in the photo is Dr. Xing-jin Li, who spoke at our last convention.
By now you all know how committed I am to conservation and reforestation. The trees that are cut down in Idaho are replaced the following summer when we plant new starts.
We all love our Sandalwood oil and understand how the tree is threatened because of overharvesting. I have been searching for a sustainable source and recently spent time at the Haloa Aina Royal Hawaiian Sandalwood plantation in Honokaa, Hawaii.
I appreciated what Royal Hawaiian’s Jeff Lee said about meeting me, “Thirty seconds was all I needed to see Gary’s principles and character. No one will ever have the background and training he has!” I look forward to visiting with Jeff again about his beautiful Hawaiian sandalwood plantation.
This is what freshly distilled Idaho Blue Spruce looks like! In clear glass, however, the color is more like pink champagne.
And I can’t forget Idaho Blue Spruce. We distilled this for the first time in January 2012. How many love Idaho Blue Spruce? Yes. My goodness. A true energy booster, among its many other benefits.