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NatureWise headquarters is in Ashland — again

NatureWise, a maker of nutrition supplements, probiotics and “vitality drinks,” has moved its manufacturing to California, but is handling all administration and marketing in Ashland, employing 19 people and racking up $18 million in sales for the year, according to its founder and CEO, DavidPaul Doyle.

Doyle, a native of the Bay Area and 1992 graduate of UC Berkeley, moved here with his family in 2003, worked in and wrote books on “meditation and healing," then incorporated his business in Ashland in 2011 before moving operations to Medford for warehouse space, finally returning to Ashland last year.

NatureWise manufactures 35 products and sells 80,000 bottles of multi-vitamin supplements, probiotics and drinks monthly, he says. The supplements are aimed at areas of stress, brain, eye, joints, pre-natal, beauty and others. They are GMO-free and organic, if possible, and are mostly found on the internet, but also in more than a thousand retail shops, he says. They are also sold at Ashland Food Co-op.

Its website, naturewise.com, says the company produces “natural supplements designed to support your body's natural wisdom and your own healthy choices to promote well-being from the inside out.”

The fizzy vitamin drinks include teas, have a caffeine boost (about the same as a cup of coffee) and come in berry, tropical and citrus flavors. Sweeteners are stevia and other non-sugar ingredients. They include amino acids and the herb ashwagandha (aka "Indian ginseng"), which Doyle says is an "adaptogenic" — meaning whether you are too wound up or too lazy, it brings you back to balance. Its tagline is “conquer the day.”

The NatureWise website says ashwagandha is “one of the most powerful herbs in Ayurvedic healing, used since ancient times for its restorative benefits. In Sanskrit Ashwagandha means 'the smell of a horse,' indicating that the herb imparts the vigor and strength of a stallion, and has traditionally been prescribed to help people strengthen their immune system after an illness.”

Supplements and probiotics are in the $13 to $29 range. Drinks are $10 for a three-pack. They may be purchased on the naturewise.com site.

— John Darling is an Ashland freelance writer. Reach him at jdarling@jeffnet.org.

(Dec. 26: Story updated to reflect that the number of bottles sold refers to the monthly, not yearly, total.)