Canada has a growing appetite for herb chambers, as the number of Canadians with an allergy grows.
The number of people with allergies has tripled in the past decade, according to data from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
A typical herb chamber is about 1.5 metres tall and contains around 20 kilograms of herbs and spices, such as cinnamon, oregano, ginger, cloves and thyme.
The chamber also holds up to 100 grams of protein.
The industry has been growing rapidly, and in the last three years, it’s attracted a growing number of companies to the Canadian market.
They’re getting in at a time when herb sales have been declining.
“There’s definitely a lot of growth in the industry.
And a lot more companies are coming in,” said Heather Davenport, who owns a Canadian-owned herb chamber and sells her products to the public in Ontario.
Davenport said the herb chambers market is about $100 million a year, and growing.
The market is expected to reach $2.5 billion in 2018.
But there’s more than just a few companies competing, she added.
“It’s a very diverse group of companies.”
Davenfield says she’s seeing a lot fewer allergies, as herb sales are up by about half a million a month, a trend that will likely continue.
“It’s definitely helped the market in terms of the number and variety of ingredients that are in them,” she said.
The herb chamber industry is growing fast.
The U.K.-based herb chamber company, Herbs, has grown by 300 per cent in the four years since it launched in 2015.
Its products include herbal blends that contain a mix of herbs that can be purchased online or from a number of specialty shops, including its Canadian outlet.
Its product, Herbal Loom, is a “super-size” herb chamber with 10 kilograms of dried herbs.
Herbs, which makes a range of herbs including rosemary, thyme, rosemary and rosemary essential oil, says it has sold more than 4.5 million herb chambers worldwide, with an average price of $1,400 per chamber.
Herb Chamber of Canada, based in Mississauga, Ont., is also expanding.
In 2016, it added a third Canadian outlet, opening a new location in Toronto.
“We’re seeing more people coming in to get the products,” said owner Michelle Beattie.
Beattie said she’s not worried about the herb chamber market drying up, because it’s becoming a very popular product.
“We’re getting a lot better with our inventory, and we’re seeing a little bit of a plateau in sales,” she added, “but we’re hoping for a rebound in sales as the year goes on.”
Bentley said the industry will remain competitive and there’s a lot to look forward to.
“Our customers are very enthusiastic about their products,” he said.