An Insight Into ‘Icariin Health’

Posted by Mark Foster on

Icariin Health Shop Product Review

The following interview gives an exclusive insight into ‘Icariin Health’ i.e. the original creators and retailers of the very first commercially available '60% icariin strength' Horny Goat Weed supplement, and covers how this achievement later resulted in the birth of the World A.B.S icariin 60™ product; now long since established as the most effective and best quality Horny Goat Weed supplement available.

The interview took place on March 1st 2017 and was conducted between the following individuals:

  • Patrick Hane from the Product Development Team at World A.B.S (WA)
  • Richard Flynn from the Sales Department at the icariinhealth.com store (IH)

WA: Hi Richard, it’s been quite a while. How have you been since we last met up?

IH: Hey Patrick, very well thank you! Yes it’s been a while since we properly touched bases in person, so I thought it would be the perfect time of the year to have a good catch up as regards the icariin 60™ supplement itself and how it's working out for us as a retailer. Therefore on that note, please do ask away...

WA: Let's get straight down to it; you are here with us in Bütschwil, Switzerland to talk about the retail side of our icariin 60™ supplement, the product in which you guys exclusively retail for us over at the ‘Icariin Health’ online-store.

So first of all; how did the ‘Icariin Health’ store come about? And which icariin/Horny Goat Weed products did you sell prior to icariin 60™?

IH: We have been retailing the very best Horny Goat Weed supplements available for almost 15 years now, therefore as you quite rightly mentioned; icariin 60™  by World A.B.S definitely is not the first Horny Goat Weed supplement in which we have retailed.

In early 2003 when we first opened our specialist online-store (which at the time wasn’t called ‘Icariin Health’), we began by retailing two separate Horny Goat Weed products; a 10% icariin extract and a 20% icariin extract, the former aimed at women and the latter aimed at men. At the time, those two commercially available dietary supplements were the best Horny Goat Weed extracts within the two aforementioned icariin percentage strengths (i.e. 10% & 20%). However over the years we began to realize that women were opting for the 20% over the 10%, and men were really pushing for something more potent in the long-term. So I believe it was around 2007 when we started to actively request the production of Horny Goat Weed extracts that contained purities from 30% up to 98% icariin. I recall that we obtained a minimum of 8 different extracts within each different percentage rating, so we had a lot!

Then over the next 12 months our Research & Development Team ran a series of double-blind studies that encompassed each of the different icariin percentage strengths. Upon final review of the trial results; we found that the 60% icariin extracts were consistently more effective when it came to both re-establishing and also boosting up levels of ‘Nitric Oxide’ and ’Testosterone'. This was something that at the time we couldn’t fully understand i.e. as to why a 60% icariin extract would consistently yield better results than that of a 98% icariin extract. However after further inquiries with herbal extract industry we began to learn about the way a plant extract can deteriorate when it is stripped of its original structure beyond a certain extent.

After discovering this trend of efficacy, we immediately started to orchestrate the production of 60% icariin Horny Goat Weed extract for the commercial market, and as a result ended up spending countless jet-lagged days in the far eastern hemisphere of the globe. Eventually, our work paid off and we managed to source an extract manufacturer with the necessary resources (in terms of both machine technology and labor skill-set) to produce 60% icariin Horny Goat Weed extract to a consistently high standard of quality for the commercial supplement market.

Then I believe it would take us through to mid-2009 when we launched the first ever 60% icariin Horny Goat Weed supplement on the herbal nutrition retail market, and naturally that’s also when the ‘Icariin Health’ online-store was born. Definitely a pinnacle moment for ourselves, and importantly a moment in which we were finally able to present the fruit of our hard work to the end consumer.

WA: Being in ‘product development’ myself I can certainly relate to that feeling of releasing a new type of/level of product, it’s definitely a very proud time in ones career.

OK so, what happened next? And why do you now retail the World A.B.S 60% icariin Horny Goat Weed supplement as opposed to the 60% icariin Horny Goat Weed supplement in which you guys introduced to the supplement market back in 2009?

IH: It was at the beginning of 2012 when that transition took place. Basically our 60% icariin Horny Goat Weed product had been on the market for over 2 years and was doing very well, but we wanted the product to keep moving forwards and we were not big on the ‘branding’ side of things, but adamant that the next step was to give the product a proper brand name. We have always focused on the retail aspect of the product more so than the branding aspect, so we were a bit stuck!

Eventually we decided that we would be happy to sell the branding rights of the product off to a pre-existing nutrition brand which met the following criteria:

  • Has a good and long-standing reputation within the industry/market for specifically producing ‘high-end’ dietary supplements only.
  • Would grant ‘Icariin Health’ exclusive ‘online’ retail rights over the product.

Essentially we wanted the supplement to gain the recognition it deserves, in the way it deserves. It’s very much a specialist Horny Goat Weed product and so it needed the touch of a specialist supplement brand, a brand that could continually develop and improve the product, essentially helping it grow into its new big boots!

WA: Very interesting indeed. We are assuredly very honored that you chose World A.B.S as the brand ambassadors for the product. On that note; how would you say the product has changed since you handed over the reins to us back in 2012?

IH: Quite vastly, whilst keeping it very much the same at the core.

The entire time in which we retailed the supplement between 2009 and 2012; the product packaging was a plastic sachet/pouch, which was actually quite good for shipping/mailbox purposes, however from a consumer storage standpoint the pouches were lacking in terms of both presentation and overall storage convenience, something which a good quality screw-cap bottle does to perfection. Also with ourselves not being big on the ‘branding’ side of things, at that time we didn’t even have our store name on the product packaging. Instead we simply let the extract manufacturers brand it with their own name.

But going beyond the packaging, the product within has also changed in other aspects, aspects of which are pinnacle to how effectively the product works for the consumer. These include:

  • How the product is delivered within the body due to the use of ‘delayed-release’ capsule shells. As you know Patrick; the capsule shells used for the icariin 60™ supplement are used only for icariin 60™ supplement because you guys at World A.B.S specifically designed those shells (from the ground up) for the delivery of 60% icariin extract within the body i.e. in terms of bioavailability.
  • The type of 'flowing agent' used, enabling the best possible preservation of the extracts active elements both whilst in production stages and also whilst stationary within the finished capsule shell.
  • And finally of course, the techniques and methods that have been improved/newly applied at the plant extraction stages, which also stems right back to the pre-extraction stages, meaning the actual cultivation of Epimedium plant crops themselves.

We quite simply didn’t have the power and outreach that you guys at World A.B.S have in order to properly execute the above steps of progression with the product, and so looking back all these years later, we are very pleased with our decision to hand the reins over to you guys.

WA: That’s excellent to hear, thank you. Right, so whilst the ‘Icariin Health’ shop currently has exclusive rights to retail the icariin 60™ product, you as a store are entirely at liberty to retail other icariin/Horny Goat Weed supplements whenever you should wish to do so. Has there been any other products in which you (Icariin Health) have considered retailing alongside icariin 60™?

IH: We are continuously looking into new icariin/Horny Goat Weed supplements, as there’s plenty popping up. We have a group of people of whom we basically hire for 3 months each year in order to trial any new icariin/Horny Goat Weed based products that have sparked our interest. We are more than happy to retail another type of icariin/Horny Goat Weed product along side icariin 60™, however thus far we haven’t come across any supplement that has given us good enough of a reason to do so i.e. in terms of outright product efficacy, which is due (in part) to the progression of the quality factors mentioned above in my answer to your previous question.

The icariin extract in which we introduced to the market in 2009 and the extract you use right now in 2017 is from the very same extract manufacturers, so that particular plant extract manufacturer now has a very longstanding history for producing specifically 60% icariin Epimedium extract. And clearly; by the standard of the product today, yourselves at World A.B.S have invested and worked closely with said extract manufacturer to assist in the improvement of all aspects of the production process.

WA: That’s very true; whilst we are continually looking into new products, we are also continually looking down new avenues for our existing products. If we can improve a supplement and make the overall experience better for the end-user, then we want to be the first ones to bring that advancement to the table.

OK last one, but well... it’s actually a three part question;

What do you think is good about being part of the the icariin/Horny Goat Weed market? What is not so good about being part of the icariin/Horny Goat Weed market? And, what do you think is the future for icariin extract?

IH: That is a big one indeed! OK so I will definitely have to break this one down into the three separate parts in which is deserves.

The Good:

The great number of caring and conscientious human beings one gets to meet when they work within the natural health industry. Not everyone on the planet shares the same level of compassion when it comes to the health of other people and health issues in which they may not necessarily be affected by themselves. Thus one of the best aspects of being part of this industry is that you get to meet some of the most endearing and caring people on the planet, people who wake up each day to make positive things happen, those who (without hesitation) will go out of their way to help others whenever the need arises.

Our customers at ‘Icariin Health’. Everyday we get to chat with new and interesting characters, men and women of all ages from all over the globe and in all types of professions and situations. We learn a great deal from our customers and we receive all nature of positive words from customers for things we never could of imagined. Last year, one kind lady actually posted to us a very expensive bottle of cognac to say thank you for saving her and her husbands marriage! It’s safe to say that the contents of said bottle were consumed over the holiday season however the bottle itself will remain in the office indefinitely as a symbolic reminder of why we come into work each day and do our very best.

Another area of the icariin/Horny Goat Weed world in which we admire profoundly, is the researchers who spend a great deal of their time and expertise discovering new ways in which icariin and its derivatives can help the people. These remarkable individuals have to date discovered many proven ways in which icariin/Horny Goat Weed can benefit the human body, and are continually revealing new ways every year. Their work is truly indispensable.

The Not So Good:

As with any other type of dietary supplement market, the icariin/Horny Goat Weed market is of no exception when to comes to contrived marketing types who use bogus ‘Top 10 Horny Goat Weed Supplement Review’ websites (i.e. falsely posing to be ‘independent’) in order to try and sell their inferior Horny Goat Weed supplements. These spurious type of folk commonly take either of the following two marketing formats, in an attempt to fool the masses:

1) 'Top 10 Best Horny Goat Weed Supplements Reviewed' Type Article On An E-Commerce Store:

This format of marketer creates a ‘Top 10 Best Horny Goat Weed Supplements Reviews’ web-page on their very own e-commerce store. The funny part about these is that because the 'Top 10 Supplements' list is on an online-store, they essentially have to pretend to sell all 10 different Horny Goat Weed supplements i.e. as a means to try and portray the reviews as being independent and impartial.

However coincidentally (said with tongue in cheek) you can only actually buy the Horny Goat Weed supplement in which the site owner has reviewed and ranked as being the #1 best, because the rest of the supplements on the top 10 list are (funnily enough) ‘sold out’, essentially because the retailer doesn't stock the other 9 supplements and never intends to do so either.

Another easy way to spot these types of fake ‘Top 10 Best Health Product Review' type websites is that they will typically come equipped with "Buy X, Get X Free" type offers, again only on the particular Horny Goat Weed product in which they review as being #1 best, with no such "Buy X, Get X Free" type offers on any of the other 9 products within their reviews list. So yes, hardly an 'independent' Top 10 Best Horny Goat Weed reviews list... to any such extent of the word.

2) 'Top 10 Best Horny Goat Weed Supplements Reviewed' Type Article On A Consumer Health Digest Website:

These ones are by far the most senseless. Basically the owners of these so called 'independent consumer top 10 review' type websites establish commission based sales agreements with actual retailers of the supplements in question. Then they proceed to “plug” the sale of these products on their fictitious 'Top 10 Supplement Consumer Review' websites. Unlike the first model mentioned above; these types of 'Top 10 Reviews' lists are not created on an e-commerce website, but rather created as sites which pretend to be 100% independent ‘consumer health digest’ type sites, as such posing to be there as a free information source, solely for the good of the people.

The reality of these sites however, is such that the product in which they rate as being the #1 best within their 'Top 10 Ranked Horny Goat Weed Supplement Reviews' list, also just so happens to be the single product in which they have a ‘Special Offer Discount/Coupon Code’ for and a 'link to buy’ taking you off to the retailer website of the product. Of course the other 9 products within their top 10 reviews list do not have any such ‘links to buy’ and/or a ‘Special Offer Discount/Coupon Codes’, which immediately establishes the fact that they have a conflict of interest within their so called 'independent' review ratings. That conflict of interest of course being; a commission payment awarded to the marketer by the e-commerce store in which the marketer links you through to purchase from (the marketer being identifiable to the retail store by his/her allotted 'Special Offer Discount/Coupon Code’ in which they have given you to enter when you checkout on the retailers store). Independent? Far from it.

We at ‘Icariin Health’ get many emails from people trying to become commission marketers for the icariin 60™ supplement. However we unfortunately will always have to decline these offers because of the aforementioned behavior we so often see from them.

We also receive emails from people who have purchased Horny Goat Weed/icariin supplements from these aforementioned spurious marketers, supplements that of which are supposedly rated as being the #1 best on these ‘Top 10 Horny Goat Weed Review’ websites, and as such purported as being more effective. These consumers have then later gone on to try icariin 60™ Horny Goat Weed, and thus they then proceed to email us enquiring as to why on said ‘Top 10 Horny Goat Weed Supplements Consumer Review’ website, does icariin 60™ get a lower star rating than the other Horny Goat Weed/icariin supplement that they tried, despite icariin 60™ working far more effectively for them. And as soon as the customer provides us with a link to the review website, we can immediately see that it’s a bogus health supplement review, posing to be 'independent', yet in actual fact built by marketers for personal gain.

The unfortunate part about these aforementioned formats of bogus ‘Top 10 Product Reviews’ marketing websites, is that A) they often hinder people from finding the legitimately independent science/research websites that do actually provide people with solid factual information of a trustworthy origin, and B) they can sometimes end up giving Horny Goat Weed/icariin extract itself a negative rep by fooling people into buying what these marketers are falsely portraying as the most effective Horny Goat Weed supplements on the market, when the vast majority of the supplements being plugged in this desperate manner; are often of very low quality and thus not at all effective for the end consumer. The good thing however is that consumers are very smart, and so in the end, health supplements of a high standard of quality, with true efficacy, always prevail.

The Future:

I am both hugely elated and hugely confident about the very bright future that lies ahead of icariin extract. Speaking from my time within the icariin market/industry; I can say unquestionably that over the last 8 years 60% icariin has had a very bright history within the natural health market.

Each year that passes we are discovering new ways in which icariin has been proven at a scientific level to be beneficial for people. No longer is the extract known only for its two primary benefits of 'enhancing sexual health' and being an amazing 'athletic performance booster'. We now also have customers (both men and women) who take the product for many other proven health benefits relating to entirely different areas, areas of which we never even envisaged 8 years ago. These more recently discovered benefits of icariin include the following:

  • Bone health maintenance, including beneficial attributes towards combating the symptoms associated with osteoporosis.
  • To protect the health of the liver.
  • Improve memory function.
  • Maintain a healthy immune system.
  • Reduce anxiety and depression.
  • As a counter against the unwanted side effects of other medications being taken.
  • To battle chronic fatigue.
  • For maintaining and improving memory function.

So yes as you can imagine, from the more recently proven benefits of icariin extract listed above; it’s very exciting times ahead and always has been with this particular health product. Not only are we 'as a store' continually developing to improve the shopping experience in which our customer receives into the future, but we are also encouraged greatly by the ever-growing array of ways in which this product is helping people.

WA: Well you have given us a wonderful insight with this interview Richard, thank you very much for your time, your answers throughout have certainly given us some ‘food for thought’ with upcoming developments of the icariin 60™ supplement.

That wraps it up, so if you want to say any thank you’s, now is the time!

IH: Certainly, I would like to thank all our team back at ‘Icariin Health’, the kind ladies and gentlemen you have here at World A.B.S, the independent scientists and researchers who continually to do their best to make great new discoveries with icariin extract, and last but by no means least; all of our great customers over the years who make my job both very interesting and very enjoyable every day. Thanks for this opportunity Patrick, and I hope to see yourself and the rest of your team again in the very near future. All the best, Richard from icariinhealth.com



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