Why is there oil at the top of my jar?
We don’t use any palm oil, hydrogenated oil, or other stabilizers to prevent natural oil separation. Simply stir well to the bottom of the jar and enjoy! Check out our blog post on palm oil.
I can’t taste the Chai/Salt/Maple/Ginger, etc. in my jar of nut butter. Help?!?!
Our nut butters are natural, flowing products. We don’t use “flavoring” that permeates the entire jar, but rather use whole ingredients and spices. Over time, some of these solids can sink to the bottom. Just give your nut butter a really good stir all the way from the bottom of the jar to re-incorporate all these tasty bits.
How should I store my nut butters and/or bars?
We recommend storing our nut butters and bars in a cool, dry place and out of direct sunlight. Refrigeration is not necessary.
We don’t use palm oil, hydrogenated oils, or other fillers, so if you eat our nut butter infrequently, you’ll notice natural oil separation over time. We recommend storing the jar upside down to reverse the typical direction of oil separation and ease stirring when you’re ready to dive back in. We also suggest flipping the jar(s) every few weeks to let gravity do the “stirring.” Please note that these tips will not prevent natural oil separation, but they should make stirring a little easier. Delicious nut butter is always #worththestir.
Why do you charge $9 for shipping on orders less than $50?
We strive to offer our customers the best value, and that includes shipping costs. Doing everything by hand and using only responsibly produced and recyclable shipping materials has real costs, and we absorb most of them. We opt for a $9 flat shipping rate rather than a variable rate based on location and weight because we find this saves most customers money. Shipping is free for orders $50 or more.
Why do your nut butters cost more than other “natural” brands?
We’re so glad you asked! There are a number of reasons our nut butters cost more than some other “natural” brands.
- Ingredient integrity – Each ingredient we use is carefully sourced based on our strict standards for taste, sustainability, and the fair and ethical treatment of those involved with producing it (farming and processing). Most of our ingredients are organic and all are GMO-free. We never use fillers or shelf stabilizers like hydrogenated oils or palm oil. For details about individual ingredients, please see below.
- Small batch, handcrafted quality – Most “natural” nut butter brands use a co-packer to make their nut butters, meaning the people in charge are nowhere near where the product is being made. We make everything on-site at our headquarters in Durham, NC. Each batch is carefully made by our small team and taste tested to ensure it meets our exacting standards.
- Employee benefits – We pay our team members above living wage standards and offer additional benefits including wellness funds for gym, yoga, and sport league memberships, health insurance stipends, full dental and vision care, and CSA membership support.
- Sustainability – We source only from ecologically sustainable farmers, have a nearly waste-free process, use only recycled and non-toxic paper labels, and use only cruelty-free cleaning products. We also package in recyclable and reusable glass jars. More on that here.
Are your products GMO-free?
Yes, all of our ingredients are non-GMO. However, we cannot get certification because we use local wildflower honey. In order for honey to be certified as non-GMO, the bees that make it must have a 4-mile radius of certified non-GMO or organic farmland. Unfortunately, this is basically impossible in the contiguous United States. We believe in supporting our local beekeeper (they keep the bees alive) so we’ve opted to continue using their delicious, nutritious honey. We are exploring sources for certified non-GMO honey from outside the U.S., so if this is something you’d like us to pursue, please let us know!
Are your products certified Organic?
No, but most of our ingredients are certified organic, including peanuts, pecans, cashews, coconut oil, coconut nectar, quinoa, and cane sugar. For more details on individual ingredients, please see below.
Do you ship internationally?
Yes! Please contact email@example.com for a shipping quote.
What is the white stuff at the top of my Chocolate Sea Salt jar!?
Don’t worry! The organic stone ground chocolate blend we use includes cocoa butter. In the colder months, when the natural oils start to separate, the cocoa butter can solidify and turn white. If you give it a really good stir the oil will re-incorporate into the nut butter. If ever in doubt, please send us the jar number (on the safety tab) and a photo to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I take a tour of Big Spoon Roasters?
Thank you for interest in visiting our headquarters. We do a lot with a little space, and for food safety reasons, we do not offer tours to the public at this time.
Can I pick up my order?
Our space is not conducive to a large number of pick-up orders. However, for orders of a case or more of product we can make an exception. Please contact us at email@example.com
What is chicory root fiber?
Chicory root fiber is an ingredient in our Handcrafted Nut Butter Bars. Chicory is a blue-flowered herb that grows throughout North America and Europe. The leaves of the chicory are known as endive. The root is often brewed as a caffeine-free coffee alternative or used to create an extract known as chicory root fiber or inulin. This extract is a source of soluble fiber and prebiotic which helps promote gut health. Our chicory root fiber achieved official ‘natural’ designation by the strict ISO (International Organization for Standardization) standards. The fiber is extracted using hot water, and the resulting product is the exact fiber you’d ingest if you ate the chicory root itself.
Do you soak your nuts?
If you’re going to eat nuts, it’s best to either soak, sprout, or cook them beforehand to increase the bioavailability of their nutrients, i.e. to make them easier to digest and absorb the nutrition they offer. We choose to roast (hence our name) for several reasons: 1) it makes nuts more delicious thanks to the Maillard reaction (a process akin to caramelization in which proteins and sugars turn brown and delicious), 2) it makes nuts easier to digest, and 3) it increases the food safety of nuts by killing potentially dangerous microbes such as salmonella and listeria. If you are consuming nuts that have been soaked, especially if they are then stone-ground, be sure that the nuts have been completely dried and tested for food-borne pathogens. Moisture, which can be held in grinding stones, significantly increases the chances of food-borne pathogens. That’s why we use custom steel milling plates in our nut mill.
Can I return my used nut butter jars to Big Spoon Roasters for reuse?
Thank you so much for your commitment to sustainability. Unfortunately, we are not equipped at this time to receive, sterilize, and reuse our jars. We encourage you to reuse them at home, though. They make excellent portable vessels for overnight oats, homemade salad dressing, spice blends, breakfast parfaits, smoothies, etc. They also make a great glass for water, wine, or your favorite cocktail. Our jars are also recyclable.
Where do you source your ingredients? Are they organic?
Almonds – We use heirloom Mission variety almonds sourced directly from Treehouse Farms in the San Joaquin Valley of California. Treehouse’s exceptional sustainability efforts include super-efficient, water-saving micro-irrigation systems which are powered by on-site solar panels. Treehouse Farms is also Bee Friendly Certified. Learn more about their sustainability and land conservation efforts here. These almonds are pasteurized with steam, not chemicals.
Organic Peanuts – Our delicious organic Cordoban Runner peanuts are sourced from a group of growers in Argentina. Peanuts are indigenous to South America, and Argentina has an abundance of land ideal for peanut cultivation, with a naturally high soil fertility that requires little to no fertilizers to produce large yields and healthy crops. Read more here.
Organic Pecans – Our organic Wichita/Western Schley variety pecans are grown and harvested in Sinaloa. Mexico.
Organic Cashews – Our organic cashews are Anacardium Occidentale variety, and are grown in Vietnam.
Hazelnuts – Our hazelnuts are Barcelona and Clark variety, sourced from Oregon. Although they aren’t certified organic, Oregon growers use natural pest controls whenever possible, and limit spraying significantly.
Sea Salt – Our sea salt comes from Jacobsen Salt Co. It is hand harvested from the pristine waters of the Netarts Bay on the Oregon coast. To learn more about Jacobsen and how their incredible salt is made, click here.
Honey – Most of our raw wildflower honey comes from Cannady Apiaries in Harrells, NC. Occasionally, when supplies are limited, we source honey from neighboring states. To learn more about why we use this honey, click here.
Sorghum – Our small-batch sorghum syrup comes from Muddy Pond Sorghum Mill in Muddy Pond, TN. To learn more about this family farm click here.
Coconut Nectar – We use organic Coconut Secret coconut nectar in crystal form for extra texture.
Organic Maple Syrup – Our organic maple syrup comes from Coombs Family Farms. We use a crystalized version to provide added texture.
Cane Sugar – Our cane sugar is 100% raw, organic, Fair Trade Certified demerara sugar.
Chocolate – Our chocolate comes from Taza Chocolate in Somerville, MA. Taza was a pioneer in developing the first third-party certified Direct Trade cacao sourcing program, to ensure quality and transparency for all. Learn more about Taza here. Note: Our Taza chocolate comes to us in solid form. We melt it down to add it to our nut butters. Because we use such a large amount of chocolate, in the cold winter months the chocolate can re-solidify giving our Almond Cocoa and Peanut Cocoa nut butters a harder texture. We recommend heating the jar in a warm water bath or for 15-20 seconds in the microwave for a more spreadable texture.
Cocoa Nibs – Our cocoa nibs come from Escazu Chocolates in Raleigh, NC. This woman-owned business sources their cocoa directly from small farms in Costa Rica and Venezuela.
Ginger – Our Fiji Ginger is from The Ginger People. They work with local farmers on the island of Fiji and invested in a local processing facility to ensure opportunities for the people of Viti Levu. To learn more about our ginger, click here.
Gluten Free Oats – We use Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free rolled oats.
Pea Protein Powder – The peas in our protein powder are grown organically by farmers in the northern U.S. and Canada. These yellow peas are a “dry crop” and require little to no irrigation. The harvested peas are dried and shipped to our vendor’s manufacturing facility, where they are milled into a fine powder. The powder is immersed in water (which is reused), and then a centrifuge mechanically separates the proteins from the starches and fibers. Then, to improve flavor, texture, and functionality, the protein is treated only with organic food-grade enzymes and citric acid. Our protein is not treated with harmful chemicals or submerged in petroleum-based hexane. Read more about why we chose this protein powder here.
Chicory Root Fiber – Our chicory root fiber is sourced from Sensus and is verified ‘natural’ by ISO. Learn more about it here.
Organic Quinoa Crisps – We use organic gluten-free quinoa crisps.
Organic Quinoa Flakes – We use organic quinoa flakes from Peru.