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Opinion

Here we bring you the thoughts of the natural and organic products industry’s leading commentators and opinion formers.

Matt_Chittock

Go figure…

After a few years of what economists might euphemistically call ‘negative growth’, the organic market is back on the march as Osborne’s ‘green shoots of recovery’ start to come out for Spring. Talk at Natural & Organic Products Europe was focused around the 2.8% growth achieved in the organic sector in the UK, according to […]

April 28, 2014 Continue Reading
Craig Sams

Have you been dealing comfrey, sonny?

The natural food trade should take a lead in exposing the hypocritical regulation of herbal medicine, says Craig Sams A bust in Denver: “Okay, kid, put your hands up against the wall. Spread your legs while we pat you down.” Two cops search a young man’s clothing. “Nothing here but a couple of marijuana joints […]

April 16, 2014 Continue Reading
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Field leader

The Organic Herb Trading Company has been at the cutting-edge of the organic herbal ingredients sector for three decades. Here, Natural Products talks with Jim Twine, newly appointed as managing director at OHTC, about his plans to move this “hidden gem” of the organic industry to the next level Natural Products: You had a high […]

March 24, 2014 Continue Reading
The Chit and Janey

A Lush victory

What’s in a name? Plenty, if you’re an ambitious natural beauty company that needs to communicate everything good about your brand through the well-chosen words that name your range. That’s why Lush’s recent court victory over Amazon was so important. For those who missed the story, Amazon was actively hijacking customers who typed ‘Lush’ into […]

March 4, 2014 Continue Reading
John

Great Social Media Myths

My discussions with lots of business owners about social media mainly fall into two groups. The first group say they don’t use social media in their marketing as they’re not “internet savvy”.  Well here’s some good news, you don’t need to know anything about the internet to exploit the power of social media – I’ll […]

February 13, 2014 Continue Reading
The Chit and Janey

MI: still a sensitive issue

“Every cosmetics product on the market in Europe is safe to use,” announces the comforting blurb on the website of cosmetics trade organization Cosmetics Europe. However, ongoing alarm about the use of methylisothiazolinole (aka MI or MIT) proves that some ingredients might be a lot safer to use than others. MI recently hit the headlines […]

January 9, 2014 Continue Reading

Give your customers some action!

With a treasure trove of exciting, tasty, differentiated products to try, love and buy, I believe everybody is a potential customer. True? Then why do over 85% of people walk right past our doors? Of course, we must aim to be ‘trusted advisors’, educating customers about health, wellbeing and ethical issues, but before we can […]

January 7, 2014 Continue Reading
Craig Sams

Small is still beautiful

Who needs big organisations that are inherently inefficient in this age of smartphones and smart farmers? The future is small, the future is beautiful … and resilient The Royal Scottish Geographical Society, in their wisdom, decided to bestow their Shackleton Medal (for Leadership and Citizenship) on me, and my wife Jo Fairley. The event was […]

December 11, 2013 Continue Reading
The Chit and Janey

Embracing sell-o-vision

For fashion and beauty snobs there’s no dirtier acronym than QVC. The original home shopping channel is associated in some people’s imagination with chintzy diamante trinkets and Swiss Army-style cooking accouterments destined to collect dust in kitchen cupboards and bedroom drawers. But, as a surprisingly upbeat profile in last month’s Vogue shows, the channel is […]

December 2, 2013 Continue Reading
Simon

Roll up, get your black candyfloss here

Over the weekend of September 6-8 the Food Organisation of Denmark delivered a first rate consumer show which inspired and delighted visitors to Aarhus  (foodfestival.dk/en/om-food-festival). Last year the show attracted 30,000 visitors and with sunny weather this year it is likely that this figure was exceeded. The setting was idyllic. Next time you are incarcerated […]

October 2, 2013 Continue Reading
Jim Manson

Let’s get down to details

When the big four supermarkets pulled swathes of organic lines from their shelves in the early stages of the 2008 recession they set in train a self-fulfilling prophesy. As organic food sales duly fell away the retail giants could claim that their prediction that shoppers would abandon premium-priced ‘discretionary’ items like organic had been right. […]

September 25, 2013 Continue Reading
Jim Manson

The future of retailing … or ungroovy uncle of an idea?

“A compelling combination of retail, food service and community” “The retail equivalent of your uncle trying to be groovy at a wedding and failing” Two rather different interpretations of Tesco’s widely publicised plans to breathe some life into its underperforming superstores – the first from Kantar Retail, the second from the New Economics Foundation’s Andrew […]

September 23, 2013 Continue Reading
Craig Sams

Three cheers for ethical mob rule

We used to fear mob rule. But if the ‘mob’ is all nice people who you’d be happy to introduce to your mother, well, what’s wrong with that? Welcome to the Collaborative Economy. I farm 20 acres, mostly woodland and orchard, with 2 acres of organic vegetable production.  I farm people – and they farm […]

August 6, 2013 Continue Reading
Craig Sams

Little supermarkets, big threat?

Having left local high streets for dead the big supermarkets are re-colonising them at a rate of knots with new small-format stores. Big threat to independents, right? Not necessarily, says Craig Sams After decades of disembowelling the nation’s high streets, the supermarkets are rushing back in with a variety of ‘Local’ or ‘Express’ or other […]

July 4, 2013 Continue Reading
Christopher-Whitehouse

Stopping the Government from Backtracking on their Herbal Practitioners Promise

You don’t have to work in politics to realise that the Government sometimes promises something with the maximum of fanfare and then, after a suitable period of time has elapsed, quietly shelves whatever it had been planning to do. Often this is because there is much more opposition out there than the Minister supposed, opposition […]

June 28, 2013 Continue Reading
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