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How We Started

Our Story


Ema's Herbs opened its doors in 1989 in Ventura, California. What started as a simple dream, Ema Omanovic began her herbal practice within the United States once realizing that European Medicinal Practices were not accessible within California.

Ema had traveled from Bosnia & Herzegovinia after graduating in 1984 from Sarajevo University with a Ph.D. in Pharmacy. She had worked as a pharmacist for 5 years, while she continued to further develop her knowledge of herbal remedies. Ema published "Village Remedies" based on recipes and folk medicine from local mountain villages. 

Once coming to California, Ema decided to open a practice based solely on natural medicine practices. The recipes and blends found in Ema's Herbs are a collection of research, training and personal experiences of Ema Omanovic.

Since 2014, Ema Omanovic's daughter, Sara Omanovic has continued the business. Through years of apprenticeship, personal research and taking Naturopathic classes, Sara Omanovic hopes to further grow Ema's Herbs as a all-encompassing healing center.

Why Herbs? Our Philosophy


For centuries, herbs have been utilized for their medicinal benefits. Hebrew, Persian, Egyptian, Chinese and Native American records demonstrate the extensive use of herbs within medical practices to treat every known illness at the time.  The pharmaceutical industry is based upon the ability to isolate specific compounds found within herbs, and then make purer forms so that they could be readily available as drugs. Unfortunately these purer forms of medicine have shown increasing side effects that can cause long-term harm to the body. Thankfully nature's pharmacy is here to help. Herbs have the ability help treat, cure and prevent diseases. 

At Ema's Herbs, we believe in the ability of the body to heal itself. Despite numerous amounts of illnesses, differing types of inflammations and deficiencies of specific nutrients, once we nourish our bodies, we can make drastic changes towards the improvement of our bodies health. What we at Ema's Herbs hope to provide are the first steps towards achieving wellness, through education, guidance and enabling our clients to take power over their own health. Herbs are one of many tools to promote healing through allowing the body to regulate and reinvigorate itself.

The Source of Our Products

We source our herbs from multiple different herbal companies such as Starwest, Frontier, and San Francisco Herbal Company. We also have direct relationships with small batch herbal farms within the United States (California, Oregon and Vermont) as well as in Croatia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Serbia.

Who We Are


Ema Omanovic-Salmon

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Founder of Ema's Herbs. Ema is originally from Bosnia & Herzegovinia. She graduated in 1984 from Sarajevo University with a Ph.D. in Pharmacy. She had worked as a pharmacist for 5 years, while she continued to further develop her knowledge of herbal remedies. She started Ema's Herbs in 1989 with the intention to spread the knowledge of herbalism


Sara Omanovic

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Owner of Ema's Herbs and daughter of Ema Omanovic-Salmon, Sara studied under Ema for 6 years as an herbalist apprentice. She continued to go to University of California, Los Angeles where she received her degree. She has continued her studies through herbal and nutrition certification programs. 


Sue Martinie

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Sue Martinie has worked with Ema's Herbs for over 7 years. Her specialities focus around gardening, harvesting herbs and making herbal mixtures into salves. 

Why People Love Us


Sean Roberto Hatch

"I am so blessed to have had the opportunity of walking into her shop. Ema gave it to me straight because she knew I could handle it, even though I've only met her once.....I love Ema!"


Holly Rogers

"The teas , supplements and advice I have received at Ema’s Herbs are helping my depression, insomnia, and lack of energy, especially while grieving. She treats the whole person, returning one to a greater state of health. I am very grateful I found this Ventura health resource.


Rhonda Reyes

"Sara is like no other. She is able to read the body and truly understand what is happening. She is able to balance your system through consult by paying 100% attention to what you share and how your body responds to different pressure points in your feet. I honestly believe she is saving my life. Thank you Sara!"


Rita Bifano

"I don't know why I waited so long to go back and see you and get my teas that I need. I won't from now on.
After our visit with you on Friday, my husband's blood sugar went down from 287 to 100 on Saturday morning. Will see you in a month. Thank you."

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