Why Buying Moringa Powder On Amazon Can Be Risky
Amazon.com has two different ecommerce businesses. There is Amazon the retail store, where Amazon buys, warehouses, and quality controls products before reselling them to consumers. This is the same business model as a normal store, whether Walmart or the local hardware store.
Then there is the Amazon third-party marketplace, a semi-regulated platform where anyone can apply to be an Amazon seller, and offer goods through the Amazon.com site. Amazon does not buy or quality control these goods, outside of limited policing of counterfeiting and openly dangerous products like weapons. This third-party bazaar makes up more than 50% of the total sales on Amazon.
Because of this, consumers should use extra caution when buying products on Amazon that affect their health, wellness, and finances. The Amazon platform is designed to make it not totally clear who you are buying from, as you can see below:
The Unwinder’s Amazon Safety Index helps buyers shop for supplements safely on Amazon. We analyze the potential of fake or counterfeit products, low-quality products, products that pose health risks, and products from fly-by-night or illegitimate sellers and non-branded resellers.
When possible, we recommend the safest versions of a product to buy on Amazon, and offer other reputable places to buy.
The Unwinder’s Amazon Safety Index helps buyers shop for supplements safely on Amazon.
This review applies the Safety Index to Moringa Powder on Amazon. Moringa Powder is a botanical dietary supplement, derived from the Moringa tree, also known as moringa oleifera, horseradish tree, benzoil tree, benzolive tree, drumstick tree, saijan, or West Indian Ben.
What The Amazon Safety Index Looks Like
The Unwinder’s Amazon Safety Index has two scales. The first is simply how safe the supplement would be to buy on Amazon.
|Safe||You can basically buy any of the products on Amazon and be sure that the product authentic|
|Probably Safe||There are many legit products on Amazon, but not enough that you shouldn’t choose carefully|
|Potentially unsafe||There are so many illegitimate products on Amazon that you need to do extremely thorough research on each one if you even want to risk buying one|
|Unsafe||There are no products on Amazon that are not significantly affected by authenticity issues|
The second is rating the potential risk of issues specific to the supplement you’re looking at. We have a simple 3-point scale here.
|Low||There is little risk of the supplement being affected by the issue in question|
|Medium||There is risk of the supplement being affected by the issue in question|
|High||In many cases, the supplement is affected by the issue in question|
Risks Commonly Associated With Buying Supplements On Amazon
The supplement market, because it’s unregulated by the FDA, has a higher risk of selling fake and close-to-fake supplements, as well as supplements that are rendered inert or toxic due to the supplement company’s processing and/or packaging practices. These issues are not endemic to Amazon. The risks are present anytime you’re wading around the supplement market. There are, however, issues specific to Amazon, including illegitimate reviews and “Amazon-only sellers” among others.
- Fake supplements: Supplements that don’t contain what they claim to contain. In late 2019, Amazon itself warned consumers about fake supplements on Amazon.
- Close-to-fake supplements: Supplements that contain an inactive form of the herb or compound (e.g. Ashwagandha vs. Aswhagandha containing 3-10% withanolides)
- Poorly processed supplements: those which are rendered inert or toxic (e.g. past expiration, mold) due to the company’s processing / packaging standards
- Illegitimate reviews: a significant percentage of the Amazon page’s reviews are demonstrably inauthentic
- “Amazon-only sellers”: while not necessarily bad, Amazon-only sellers tend to have less established reputations; generally (again, this does not apply to every Amazon-only seller) they go after space in the Amazon market where they feel they can dominate the search rankings, whatever the product is. In short, Amazon sellers may not have any specific expertise in the products they’re selling—and the claims they’re making about those products. Amazon-only sellers are regularly one-person, low-budget, or “drop shipping” operations, or are based overseas.
When possible, The Unwinder recommends USP-approved supplements. USP, the U.S. Pharmacopeia, is a non-governmental organization providing trust and safety reports for dietary supplements and herbal medicines. We also, when possible, recommend buying brand-direct, whether on Amazon, the brand’s own website, or another ecommerce site.
Risks Commonly Associated With Buying Moringa
Like we said above, the supplement market is less regulated, so you have to be careful when you’re buying any supplement. As well—because Amazon lets 3rd-party supplement sellers onto their platform—you would do well to be especially concerned about buying supplements from Amazon. Here are the risks commonly associated with buying Moringa:
- Product adulteration: because most Moringa is produced outside of the United States, often in countries with less stringent food-testing standards, Moringa supplements are at risk of being adulterated with ‘imposter’ herbs or fillers
- Expired product: because Moringa has a shelf-life of under 1-year, there is risk of expired Moringa on the market
- Unclear dosages: because more studies need to be done on the effects of Moringa, safe dosages have not been established and it is unknown if any amount could be harmful to your health
- Toxic mold: because some Moringa is sun-dried, there is risk that the supplement contains toxic mold
Moringa Powder Amazon Safety Assessment
Given the issues above, we grade Moringa Powder on Amazon as being Probably Safe.
The Unwinder rates Moringa Powder as probably safe to buy from Amazon
Moringa Powder on Amazon has processing and expiration risks, and shows a fair number of third-party sellers and fake reviews.
Moringa Powder presents a medium risk of being poorly processed. Poorly processed dried botanical products are at risk for toxic mold.
Moringa Powder presents a medium risk of being expired. Expired dried botanical products are at risk for toxic mold.
Supplements with a medium risk in these categories should only be purchased directly from the brand, and not from a third party “Amazon only” seller on Amazon. Ideally these brands should be USP-rated.
In the Moringa Powder category on Amazon, there is a high risk of buying from a third party “Amazon only” seller.
There is a medium risk that the reviews you see are fake or illegitimate. 40% of Moringa products on Amazon failed a test for having too many fake reviews.
Top-Rated Moringa Powder on Amazon
Sold directly by Zen Principles & manufactured in the U.S.
- U.S. based company in business for more than five years
- Moringa is sourced from small, organic farms; USDA-certified
- Sun-dried and manufactured in a GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) compliant U.S. facility
- Passes test for Amazon review legitimacy, 0% fake reviews
USDA-certified, no GMOs or additives
- U.S. based company with an established social media presence
- Responsive customer service website
- No additives, preservatives, or irradiation
- Passes test for Amazon review legitimacy, 0% fake reviews
- Also sold by Walmart
Moringa Powder Shopping Alternatives
In the supplements category, buying directly from USP-rated brands is always your safest bet. These ingredients content, purity, and dosage of these products are rigorously tested and regulated. Buying directly from the brand’s preferred stores can help their business and ensures fresh product.
U.S. based with bulk order discounts
Florida-based Moringa grower since 2000
- Sustainable, local Florida business
- Sells a wide variety of Moringa-based products, including deodorant!
- Founder has been covered by major newspapers and has a sterling reputation
- Bulk discounts on 10 lb bags of Moringa powder