Why certified natural products matter now more than ever
It happened again. As I knew that it would. This past week, the Canadian news media was awash in stories about a natural skin product that was marketed as “natural” but turned out to be anything but.
When stories like this break, as an owner of a leading certified natural brand, I get so frustrated. First, it sets the industry as a whole back and discredits companies committed to providing real natural products. It also reinforces my growing concern about the marketing of natural products in general. The issue is this: there are many products out there – tons, even more than we can count – that are being marketed as natural, but aren’t.
It is so important for people to understand – natural is not a marketing convention. It’s a commitment. It’s a philosophy. It’s a fundamental way of doing business. It’s a defined approach to structuring your operations and supply chain.
Making clean, healthy products is definitely not about slapping a pretty label with a flower on a bottle and going to market. Being a true natural products provider is so much more involved than that. And consumers, who are choosing to be mindful of what they put on and in their bodies and who are trying to embrace a holistically healthy lifestyle, deserve better.
At Green Beaver, natural is part of our organic business practices. It’s part of our DNA. It guides everything that we do. Every single business decision, from start to finish.
So what does it really mean to be a true natural products provider?
It means being certified first and foremost. Certification is not a simple process. All ingredients that we use are scrutinized and approved. Our manufacturing equipment and processes must be certified as well. And we are inspected for compliance.
There is a meticulousness involved, which spans from the actual ingredients that we use in our production process to the plastic, ink and glue that we use in our packaging. We are accountable for how we recycle and consume energy. It’s not just one part of our product, it’s end to end, from start to finish.
At Green Beaver, we’ve made a conscious choice to run our business in a sustainable way. It’s not always easy. It’s not always seamless. It’s not the most affordable. But we believe in giving consumers a healthier, cleaner alternative. So we’ve made the investment of time, money, beliefs and culture to be a true natural business.
It also means being an advocate, even when it doesn’t directly impact the bottom line. It’s pushing the industry for regulations, so consumers have some sort of guarantee that what they think they are buying they are really buying. As a truly natural business, committed to the long-term growth and evolution of the industry, we fight, every day, for transparency and a fair playing field for consumers.
People ask me all of the time: what can I do as a consumer? I can’t stress it enough, especially in light of this week’s news – recall of a so-called natural product – be educated! Do your research. Know what you’re buying and whom you are buying it from. Ask the hard questions. Read labels. Tour plants if you have to. If you’re confused, find someone who can provide clarity.
But ultimately, never settle. There is a huge difference between a product marketed as natural and a product that is truly natural. Choose certified products for guaranteed natural.
Whether you are already living a healthy, natural lifestyle or are just starting out with replacing conventional products, find trusted resources in your neighbourhood. Go to your local health food store and speak with the experienced professionals there. Talk to trusted friends. Talk to certified brands directly. I happily speak with anyone who has questions.
Education is the key to making healthy decisions for you and your family. And being adamant about choosing certified natural products is the first, best decision that you can make.
Alain Ménard, microbiologist, co-founded The Green Beaver Company with biochemist Karen Clark. They were both appalled by the amount of chemicals found in kid’s shampoos, bubble baths and other products. With their new family in mind, they decided to do something about it. They left the pharmaceutical and pesticide industry behind to create healthier natural products. Alain regularly gives seminars on the potential health risks and environmental hazards associated with the chemicals found in everyday personal care products.