What is the origin of your farm name?

Moose Dog Farm pays homage to our love of Norwegian Elkhounds. Elkhound is actually a mistranslation from the Norwegian name for the breed, elghund -- the literal translation is actually "moose dog," as Elkhounds are traditionally moose and bear hunters.


Are your eggs organic?

We are not certified organic, but our chickens are fed only organic (and soy-free) feed and treats. They eat a high-quality, whole-grain chicken feed, and their diet is routinely supplemented with treats -- often frozen fruit on those hot summer days and warmed grains on our frigid winter days. Some of their favorite treats include dried grubs, watermelon, cantaloupe, kale, blueberries, strawberries, kiwi, pasta, oatmeal, corn, and squashes. 

How should I store my eggs? Should I wash them?

We do not wash our eggs prior to sale, but we do keep them refrigerated. Therefore, we recommend that you keep your eggs refrigerated at all times and that you wash them immediately prior to use. To wash, simply run them under warm water and rub them with your hands for several seconds. 

When a hen lays an egg, a natural coating is applied called a "bloom." This bloom seals the egg pores, reducing moisture loss and preventing bacteria from entering the egg. When the bloom is preserved on the egg (by not washing until immediately prior to use), the egg will stay fresher longer.


Do you use sustainable palm oil in your soap?

Absolutely. We purchase our palm oil from a source that only obtains from suppliers that are members of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), an organization dedicated to supporting sustainable palm oil production. Palm oil is used in soap to contribute hardness to the final product.

What is the whitish, powdery substance on the top of my soap bar?

When the newly-poured and curing soap is exposed to air, sometimes a whitish, powdery film can form on the  exposed area, called "ash." The formation of ash is a completely natural process and, in keeping with the hand-made and rustic nature of our products, we do not seek to prevent the formation or to remove it from the final product. The ash will in no way affect the performance of the soap. Some essential oils (e.g., peppermint, lemongrass) tend to lead to more ash formation than in soaps made with other oils.

Do you use lye in your soap?

Yes, lye (sodium hydroxide) is a necessary ingredient in the making of soap. Some companies choose to use saponified oils rather than work with the raw lye, and that means that the chemical saponification process has already taken place. We use only food-grade lye, and we routinely test our soap batches with pH strips to ensure that the proper alkalinity is achieved (pH of 9-10).


Do you use photosensitive essential oils in your products?

Yes, but not in any products that are intended to be left on your skin. We do use some photosensitive oils in our soaps and candles (e.g., grapefruit, bergamot, orange, etc.), but we never use these oils in our hand salves. 

Photosensitive oils (sometimes referred to as phototoxic oils) can cause an increased susceptibility to sun damage if used topically. They are safe when used in products that are washed off the body, but you may want to consider one of our products without any photosensitive oils if you have an existing sensitivity to the sun and its potentially damaging effects.

What is the difference between essential oils and fragrance oils?

Essential oils are natural extracts derived from plants, usually via distillation or pressing of the oils from the various plant parts. We only use 100% pure essential oils, meaning that the oils are not cut or diluted in any way -- it is the pure product derived directly from the plant. Many essential oils are purported to have healing, calming, or otherwise therapeutic qualities.

Fragrance oils are synthetic oils that are created to mimic a specific scent. Given the manufactured nature of these oils, they are available in a much wider range of scents. 

We have chosen to only use pure essential oils in our soaps and hand salves. Even though we only use fragrance oils that are safe for topical use, we have opted to use these scents exclusively in products that are not used directly on your body.


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