Thursday, December 01, 2005

Satya Nag Champa has changed!

Some of our customers comment about Satya Nag Champa smelling different then they remember. What has happened? First, let’s point out that there has been two price increases in the last 6 months from Shrinivas and rumor has it, one more will take place later this year. Shrinivas has increased prices anywhere from 20 to 30 percent recently and more will be coming. So what has attributed to these increases and why does Satya Nag Champa smell different? There are a few possible reasons for this.

1. The recipe has changed, we have been told from reliable sources that this has actually been going on the past 7 years or so, but more dramatically the last 6 months. One of the key ingredients in Nag Champa is Halmaddi. This substance is what gives Nag Champa and many other incenses their unique bouquet. The problem is that Halmaddi is also one of the most expensive ingredients used in these incenses. Sources have also said that Halmaddi is becoming more scarce in India, thus the pricing keeps going up along with the high demand. Due to this, it is rumored that Shrinivas has been reducing the amount of Halmaddi along with increasing the price of this popular incense. Shrinivas in the largest producer of incense using Halmaddi along with also being the number one selling brand of incense: Satya Nag Champa.

2. Are you buying real Nag Champa? This is always the first question that many users ask themselves when they notice a change in their favorite scent. There are knockoffs out there, but we believe that they are few. One thing to consider, age of Nag Champa’s can very greatly. If a local store has purchased from a distributor that has had inventory for a long time, then the store has it in their inventory for months, this batch will be different when compared to newer and fresh stock. Keep in mind too, if it’s too cheap or too good of a deal, it might not be authentic. Shrinivas also switched to a silver holographic seal on all Nag Champa boxes 15g and above mid 2005 (including Superhit), if you are seeing the old blue label, it is older product. We have seen Nag Champa up to 2 and 3 years old on eBay and other sites. Trust your dealer that buys direct and supports a wide variety of Shrinivas products. Knowledgeable dealers also know real from fake and don’t always buy on lowest price.

3. Free samples are included in most boxes of Satya Nag Champa since 2005, these include Satya Superhit and Satya Natural (these are their next best sellers) This does not change the aroma of Nag, but some users find that this aroma may give the illusion that it smells different. Once that samples are removed and the Nag can air out a bit, this after aroma will leave. These few samples cannot change how Nag Champa smells when it is burning.

4. Last but not least, natural ingredients are seasonal and do change. So aromas that are based on natural ingredients do smell different from time to time. Just as that apple your purchased one month was sweet and juicy, the next month it may be completely different.

So does this make Satya Nag Champa not as good as it used to be? Not really, it’s just different. Many users are still burning this incense, many are still discovering it for the first time and love it.. For those that have burned it for years and feel that it’s not quite what it used to be or just don’t like it, there are alternatives. Shanthimalai Nag Champa (also known as Red Nag) is very much what Satya Nag Champa was 10 years ago, it is very rich. Goloka Nag Champa (also known as Gold Nag) is a bit lighter and more earthly. We feel that these are the best two alternates to hardcore Nag Champa fans. Both of these brands have consistency and we have had no reports or experience of them smelling different from batch to batch. Shanthimalai and Goloka also contribute to good causes to help women and children in India. We will continue to support all of these Nag Champa’s in our store and encourage you to try new incenses.