MANISTEE COUNTY – A married couple from Manistee County offer a holistic health approach called Stohlistic Bison with handcrafted ointments, serums, teas and balms.

Rebecca Herd, co-owner of Stohlistic Bison, said the company’s name began after teaching herbal classes in Sun City, Arizona, where many of the people she interacted with were part of the retirement community.

“In (working with) cannabis and herbs, I’ve found people coming up to me with pain and discomfort that they had suffered throughout their lives … They had that stoic look on their faces just to get through the day. Said Herd. “And I’m here to say, ‘Hey, there’s a whole different holistic approach to this stoicism. Wear this look if you have to, but try this (in the meantime). ‘”

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Stohlistic Bison sells products based on herbs and essential oils.

“A lot of things on the market are just interspersed with chemicals and preservatives, fragrances and all that stuff that really isn’t that great to us,” Herd said. “And I think because of last year (with the pandemic) everyone got into a rush (thinking), ‘What’s good for me? And let me go back to the basics. ‘”

She said Stohlistic Bison put this down to the basic mindset with what it sells.

“A lot of this stuff was made by humans (centuries ago) – adding simple oils, adding simple herbal products, and things that are therapeutic, or just soothing, or even useful for first aid,” she said. “Many of the oils we pick and the herbs we put in (are) for specific reasons.”

Stohlistic Bison is in its second season at the Manistee Farmers Market, where Herd and co-owner Jonathon Alfano has a stall to sell their wares.

Herd said it looks like a lot of people visiting the market this year are interested in continuing their lifestyle with natural products.

“Considering this is our second year, everyone is walking you through the winter time in (a mindset you have to) settle down (and) get ready. But we learned that there is a season for everything, ”said Herd. “Don’t just rethink the business aspect, think about how we can integrate more into the community.”

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She emphasized that social engagement was a serious goal for her and Alfano.

“Whether it is about the provision of the products or the provision of education, we also want to make more educational factors. We want to do a lot in the community. I think that keeps us going, ”said Herd. “There is so much knowledge about plants. We’ve been using them for hundreds of years, it’s just a matter of figuring out what they’re good for. “

Alfano said the couple didn’t start out at farmers’ markets, but rather with women’s shop shows years ago when Herd taught herbal classes.

The two have been together for a dozen years.

Alfano said he was focused on conservation when they met, and participated in invasive species civic science work and bird studies in Texas.

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Both partners have different priorities in terms of the business and their backgrounds.

“He really helps with the fine-tuning, the attention to detail, (pointed out) ‘hey you forgot that part’, even down to the labels,” she said.

Herd said she’s more drawn to the plants, knowing what herbs and plants do for people, and getting back to the basics of business.

You can find more information on the Stohlistic Bison Facebook and Instagram pages.

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