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  • Jenny Jean Crawford

Warm up with Fire Cider!


Now that the Holiday Season and its accompanying cold weather is upon us, it really helps to bolster our immune systems for a number of reasons. Firstly, we are out and about, being more active and often running ourselves ragged with all the preparation and revelry. Even when it is in the service others, stress and lack of adequate rest still leads to a weakened immune system. All the while, we are getting exposed to plenty of germs and viruses that are more than willing to take advantage of our weakened constitution.


Herbal vinegars can be a great way to bolster your immune system and your gut during this time, and one of my absolute favorites is Fire Cider.


Fire Cider makes a great addition to your personal winter medicine collection. The combo of a raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar infused with warming, nutritive, antimicrobial, antiviral, and immune supportive tonic herbs is not only a tasty treat on a cold day, but also a useful ally... especially if you feel a sniffle coming on! Make sure to give yourself lots of rest too, as your body is trying to tell you something when you feel under the weather. My favorite benefit of fire cider is that it also stimulates digestion, making it a great tonic medicine for those experiencing Candida overgrowth and low gut motility.



Fire Cider is a very simple remedy to make at home as well. You choose a variety of aromatic herbs and roots with antimicrobial, antiviral, and immune supportive herbs. Then throw in some hot, hot peppers!! (My favorite ingredient!) Some great choices are: oregano, sage, rosemary, thyme, ginger, garlic, turmeric, black pepper, and red onion. The spicier the better. Cut everything up relatively small and add to a mason jar. Then, cover the plant materials with raw apple cider vinegar, place some parchment paper between the glass and the lid, and let it sit for 4-6 weeks. Alternately, after adding the ACV, you can use your blender to make a mash and then place in your jar to macerate. Some love to add honey to their fire ciders, but for anyone dealing with fungal yeast, microbial, or parasite issues in the gut, you will want to steer clear of the honey. When the fire cider is done macerating, strain and press the plant material to enjoy!


Fire Cider has been the topic of a lot of discussion as of late due to the fact that a singular company, Shire City, that makes fire cider to sell took it upon themselves to trademark the name "fire cider"... and bring a lawsuit against three herbalists who had been making and selling it since long before Shire City came on the scene. This situation is made all the more unbearable because the owners of said company are not even practicing herbalists!


Herbalists have been making and using fire cider, and calling it by that name, for decades before Shire City Herbals filed to trademark the name. “Fire Cider” is considered the intellectual property of Rosemary Gladstar, considered the Grandmother of Modern Herbalism, as she coined the term in 1981. It was copyrighted in one of her books from the 90s. The recipe was born of a combination of several even older recipes that had come down through the ages. In her words: “it’s like trying to trademark Elderberry Syrup.” Or apple pie... they are generic names of the type of substance that is being sold. Trademarking such a thing is absurd! Keep the Fire Cider Three and the fate of this traditional herbal medicine in your thoughts and prayers. “We don’t mind anyone using it (the name). Shire City can use it too. But to claim ownership? Uh-uh.” - Rosemary Gladstar #freefirecider #traditionsnottrademarks


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Jenny Jean Crawford

Pittsburgh, PA 15221​

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