Re: I was thinking that, and...

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Posted by Maureen on October 11, 2002 at 01:34:24:

In reply to: I was thinking that, and... posted by Lauren on October 11, 2002 at 00:31:58:

Hi Lauren,

Here is a process for any manufacturers or suppliers who wish to

When a new crop comes in, have the manufacturer send a sample. At
the same time when the supplier receives their supply, have the
supplier send a sample. The two should at least appear the same
under the microscope. If they don't...toss them from the study.
This would eliminate any reason for some exporter to send something
for testing different from what they sent to the supplier to sell.

Problem with this is that if the manufacturer sends a sample that is
the same as the sample the supplier sent and then the supplier
determines that the henna powder does not meet his/her standards,
that henna powder is probably not going to be sold. There are
standards that a supplier looks at that have nothing to do with what
shows up under the microscope. If I get the cleanest henna powder in
the world based upon what the microscope indicates, it still might
not meet my standard for staining. So putting that on a list is
meaningless. It won't be sold so how is that information useful.

Additionally, there are exporters who will send you one henna powder
this month and when you reorder you get something that has nothing in
common with the previous batch. I don't think that is about crop. I
think that is about a different henna powder entirely.

There are some exporters who are manufacturers who produce their
crop. There are others who purchase their powder from somewhere else
and someone else. The latter have less control over their powders
than the first group. It appears that it is the first group...the
manufacturers who produce and grow their henna powders who manage to
be the most consistent and their powders tend to change less over
time. It appears that there are some exporters from the latter group
who do a better job of quality control and who are managing to put
out henna powder that is equal to those manufacturers and producers.

Testing frozen in time will reveal nothing very useful no matter how
the samples are collected. Testing would have to be ongoing and
updated with a speed that would present a daunting task.

I also think it is important to admit and recognize an apples and
oranges problem that exists between some henna powders sold in stores
and those sold through online those we are familiar
with. For example, testing Jamila from a store can provide results
very different from those obtained when testing Jamila from online
suppliers. I don't know why but it is so. A box of Asfan (probably
spelled wrong) can be full of stems and other stuff recognizable to
the eye when purchased at one point in time and from one store and
the next purchase can be smoothe and a dream to use. I don't know
why but purchasing it to test lets me that to be so as well. So
there is something that isn't controlled related to the consistency
of the henna powders found in stores...certainly not to the degree to
which the consistency is controlled for henna powders exported to
online suppliers here. I would just think that "apples and oranges"
thing should be acknowledged somewhere and somehow. Especially if
henna powders bought from stores and made part of the exercise are
not ones that anyone is attempting to get improved or to be made more
consistent through contact with the manufacturer. They would just
remain on a list sometimes looking good and sometimes not looking
good. Information that is easily obtained by anyone willing to
spending $6.00 during a three month period of time and purchasing the
powders themselves.

Just a few other things that can impact the process.



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