Organic September – the UK’s biggest campaign dedicated to growing the organic market – is just around the corner, and this year will see an enhanced targeted consumer digital and media campaign designed to take the organic message to as many people as possible

This year’s Organic September remains focused on ‘small changes make a big difference’, but The Soil Association plans to raise the profile of the event by generating a lot more content through press and media to drive more people into stores to buy organic.

Building on the success of 2015, the organization aims to increase consumer understanding of the reasons to buy organic and broaden awareness of organic among millennials, while at the same time making it easier to buy. It will also emphasize the ‘5 reasons to choose organic’: better animal welfare; knowledge of what’s in your food; pesticide avoidance; better for biodiversity and wildlife; and sustainability.

Call to action

“There will be a clear call to action to look for the Organic September logo, so to achieve that we are doing a number of things,” explains Clare McDermott, business development director at Soil Association Certification. “This year will see more
online content as well as a video featuring some top influencers – including cook, stylist and writer Anna Jones, food busker John Quilter and Tom Hunt from Poco. These ambassadors will be talking about Organic September, their motivations for choosing organic and the impact of changing to organic, as well as revealing their own small changes. These pieces will also be available as Facebook clips.”

This year is the first time the Soil Association will hold an official launch for the month-long event. “We are bringing people together on 1 September to have an organic tapas meal which will be created by our chefs,” says McDermott. “The recipes will then be shared as exclusive downloads.”

The retailers and brands getting involved this year include Whole Foods Market, Ocado, Daylesford, Abel  & Cole, Yeo Valley, Clipper, Whole Earth, Kallo, Pukka, Eversfield, Percol, Westons, Café Direct, Zay-toun, YuYo, Alara, Pulsin, Plenish, Stella Organics, Green & Blacks, and many more. Once again, the sponsor for Organic September is Good Energy.

Festival fun

The Soil Association will be holding a big pop-up market on Roman Road in the East End of London on 10 September, where licensees will have the opportunity to sell or sample their organic products, demonstrate cooking and tasting techniques, and engage consumers with the organic message. There will also be a packed programme of events including talks and supper clubs.

McDermott says the market is designed to generate increased press awareness and raise interest for consumers. “It will give them the chance to feel, hear and buy organic, which will hopefully help to get more people into stores looking for the Organic September logo.”

The Soil Association is also launching a targeted email campaign to its database of consumers, directing them to each weeks’ offers and promotions that licensees and brands will be placing on the new and improved Organic September website pages. The emails will also feature tips and stories about the brands and producers with whom the Soil Association works.

Speaking to NPN about last year’s Organic September campaign, McDermott says: “We had an awful lot more coverage both online and in print than in the
previous year. Sales were up on 2014 by 5%, and in terms of people taking
part, 200 major brands were involved including all the major multiples. Over 3,700 point-of-sale (POS) packs were used, and 15 food bloggers covered the campaign across 30 individual events. The campaign reached over 31 million through media, an additional 21 million through social media, and achieved more than 90 individual pieces of print press coverage. In addition, there were 31,000 mentions of #OrganicSeptember and over 15,000 website visits.”

Driving traffic

“This year’s event is genuinely exciting,” adds McDermott. “The biggest thing for this year is that we will really be driving traffic and awareness through digital media which will send consumers into stores to look for the Organic September logo. And that’s going to be through paid-for advertising, through the events we’re doing and through the use of  the 30 small changes – everyday tips for social sharing. We are making it more interesting and relevant for instore by having different primary focuses throughout the weeks. Week one will cover dairy; week two fresh produce; week three will see Organic Beauty Week; and week four will focus on meat.”


Organic Beauty Week gets makeover

2016 will be Organic Beauty Week’s (19-25 September) third year, and the Soil Association is building on the Campaign for Clarity theme, asking consumers to ‘look for the logo’ and shining a light on the importance of certification and clarity within the organic beauty industry.

The event is getting a new look too. “We are completely revamping the creative and the materials around Organic Beauty Week,” says McDermott, “and we are taking it national – as well as hosting events in London for beauty buyers we will be holding events in Bristol and Glasgow, primarily to educate but also to allow people to sample brands.”

The Soil Association will be offering retailers a free POS kit, which highlights Organic Beauty Week with the sub-heading – ‘look for the logo’ and ‘we have the logo’, which can be placed over certified products.

Organic beauty brands partnering the Soil Association during the event include Neal’s Yard Remedies, Herbfarmacy, Spiezia, Natracare, Voya, Therapi, Bamford, Skin and Tonic and Terre Verdi.


Attract and educate  

To inspire you to get involved this year, here’s what retailers had to say about last year’s event …

“We were very excited to have such a full and varied programme for Organic September, with all events as accessible as possible,” said Phil Haughton, founder of the Better Food Company. “Having a month-long, national campaign is great for us as it helps us attract new customers and explain to them why they should switch
to organic.”

Last year Better Food hosted a number of events including a special screening of GMO OMG at the Watershed in Bristol, an afternoon tea party featuring Pukka Herbs, a nutrition talk focusing on how organic can help detoxifi-
cation, and a variety of instore workshops.

Whole Foods Market ran an organic market promotion in 2015 which gave 25% off across the store on the same day it hosted an organic tasting event and an Organic Pioneers evening. The store made good use of the Organic September point of sale material and messaging throughout the store, which led to increased sales and footfall over the month.

Benjamin Woodgate, the retailer’s UK marketing director, explained how it is getting involved this year: “Whole Foods Market will have a significant number of events, price promotions and product launches for Organic September. The POS produced by the Soil Association is the best I have ever seen for the campaign – we will be using this in store and would encourage other retailers to do the same to attract and educate more shoppers to eat, drink, use, choose organic products.”


Make the most of it!

This year the Soil Association will be sending out its free POS packs directly to independent retailers on its mailing list so they can easily highlight the organic message. Retailers can sign up now through the Soil Association website. The resources are also available online to download, and printed copies can be ordered on the website too.

The POS packs include posters, window stickers, handout cards, postcards and shelf talkers, and there is also a digital toolkit including banners for websites and emails. In addition, this year there is a stencil available so retailers can recreate the Organic September logo to display on their chalkboards and signage.

To drive engagement, the 30 small changes downloadable guide will also be relaunched and there is a campaign brief available for download which gives details about what the Soil Association has planned for the month.

So, take advantage of Organic September to increase sales, drive awareness and get new customers into your store. Make it easy for customers to find and buy organic instore by using
the free Organic September POS materials provided; incentivise customers to buy organic by offering instore promotions; and engage customers with instore events, such as organic tastings or cookery demos.

To further get behind Organic September, why not spread the word through your own Facebook page, Twitter or in your e-news letters, and join the conversation on social media using #OrganicSeptember. For more information on how you can get involved visit


Absolute-AromasSoothe and Go With Ice and Glow

Absolute Aromas
Tel: 01420 540400
E-mail:  [email protected]

Tired, aching muscles and joints? Absolute Aromas Ice and Glow cooling gel is a natural way to revive and refresh when your body feels overworked. As featured in Cosmopolitan, Ice and Glow gel contains a stimulating blend of Peppermint, Lavender and Rosemary essential oils to invigorate sore limbs. Ice and Glow’s rich base of Jojoba, Arnica and Vitamin E gives a further helping hand, soothing muscle tension and leaving skin with a healthy glow. When massaged into aching areas, this versatile gel absorbs quickly into the skin aiding fast relief and ensuring no sticky residue.


AlaraPertwood Farm Cereals

Pertwood Farm,
Tel: 020 7387 9303
E-mail:  [email protected]

Pertwood Farm Cereals are 100% organic, made from pure and simple ingredients.
Suitable for those with intolerances and those watching their sugar intake, Pertwood Cereals are free from wheat, added sugars, and salt also.
Pertwood oats are grown on the family farm in Wiltshire, where thoughtful crop rotation ensures Pertwoods oats, mueslis and granolas are of the highest quality and nutrient-density. Pertwood Cereals come in both the Original range and the Yacon variety, which uses Yacon (a Peruvian root vegetable) to sweeten the cereals naturally, whilst still remaining low GI and suitable for diabetics. Pure, Simple and Organic – #PertwoodPromise


Kinetic2Nutiva Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil with Buttery Flavour

Kinetic Natural Products Distributor
Tel: 08450 725825
E-mail: [email protected]

Introducing Nutiva Coconut Oil with Buttery Flavour. Contains all the goodness of Nutiva refined coconut oil combined with a delicious buttery flavour, made from pure certified organic non-GMO plants including sunflower, coconut and mint. It’s a versatile, all purpose cooking oil and is perfect butter alternative for any a variety of uses including: spread on breads, baking, sauteing and buttering popcorn. Nutiva organic coconuts are sourced from some of the richest soils in Southeast Asia and are never processed with any hexane or other harsh chemicals.



Tel:  +639175132149
E-mail:  [email protected]

Buko have launched the first Soil Association certified organic coconut jam offering in the UK. They are available in 3 different varieties – Original, Sea Salt and Chocolate, with 3 more flavours coming on line soon. The jams contain just 2-3 100% natural ingredients, combining the health benefits of both coconut milk and coconut nectar.

Versatile and easy to use, the jams can be spread on toast, used as a dessert topping, food ingredient, or as a natural sweetener in smoothies. “Buko organic coconut jam meets the consumers demand for natural, healthy products,” said Buko Founder Aled Morris.


Clearspring-(1)Clearspring Organic Japanese Umami paste: Ginger & Chilli flavours

Tel: 02087491781
E-mail:  [email protected]

Add this authentic, deeply savoury, concentrated paste to a multitude of dishes to enhance its umami flavour.  Umami, the concept of the fifth taste originating from Japan, literally means ‘savoury deliciousness’. Following a traditional fermentation method Koji, the culture used to make the iconic staples of Japanese cuisine such as miso, is added to rice and then mixed with soya sauce to create this incredibly moreish and versatile seasoning.  Can be used all year round in soups, stews and marinades, as a topping or a dip.

• High in protein • Fat free • No added sugar • Vegan


Kinetic1Avalon Organics Intense Defense with Vitamin C Antioxidant Oil

Kinetic Natural Products Distributor,
Tel: 08450 725825
E-mail:  [email protected]

Avalon Organics Intense Defense with Vitamin C Antioxidant Oil features a blend of Apricot, Raspberry and Argan Oil that absorbs quickly, reinforcing skin’s natural lipid barrier, locking in moisture and protecting skin against environmental stressors. Formerly known as Vitamin C Renewal skincare collection, Intense Defense features a powerful medley of Vitamin C, lemon bioflavonoids and white tea, all potent antioxidants proven to neutralise free radicals before they can cause damage, whilst naturally boosting collagen and elastin production. Avalon Organics contain no GMOs, parabens, harsh sulfates or preservatives, synthetic colours or fragrances, or phthalates. Vegetarian and never tested on animals.


BodywiseOrganic and natural period products

Bodywise (UK) Ltd (Natracare)
Tel: 01454 613347
E-mail:  [email protected]

Natracare organic and natural period products are made using 100% certified organic cotton and natural plant based materials. Why certified organic cotton? Conventional cotton is the most pesticide sprayed crop in the world. The production of conventional cotton generates pollution with a human and environmental cost. Organic farming keeps our air clean and removes CO2 from the atmosphere, protecting the health of cotton growers.  When using Natracare, Women on their period can feel confident knowing only Soil Association certified organic cotton is next to their skin. Natracare chlorine free, GMO-free and pesticide-free pads, panty liners, tampons and wipes allow for a clean period with a clean conscience.


Nature's-Aid100% Organic Superfoods

Natures Aid Ltd,
Tel: 01772 686231
E-mail:  [email protected]

Natures Aid range of Organic Superfood powders are sourced from around the world, from the depths of Peru through to the Brazilian rainforest to ensure our Superfood powders are packed full of nutritional goodness. The range includes; Acai Berry, Barley Grass, Maca,  Moringa,  Spirulina, Wheatgrass and our star performer Ultimate Superfoods powder which  contains  31 Organic Superfoods and Enzymes.  Certified by the Soil Association and suitable for vegans, they can be easily added to shakes, smoothies, yoghurt and other foods to add a great taste and give a daily nutritional boost.


Kinetic4Organic Food Bar Active Greens Chocolate Covered

Kinetic Natural Products Distributor,
Tel: 08450 725 825
E-mail:  [email protected]

Organic Food Bar Active Greens contains 11g of raw organic protein, including 4000mg of an exclusive green superfood blend with Spirulina, wheat and barley grass and Blueberry and Raspberry. There’s also 7g of fibre per bar, which is 28% of the recommended daily intake for adults. New to the Active Greens range are: Chocolate Covered +Protein; with a whopping 15g of protein per bar, and Chocolate Covered +Probiotic; covered in a thick coating of organic non-dairy Belgium chocolate. The planet’s best green superfoods elevated to gourmet dessert standards. Perfected for your discerning palate. Raw, vegan and gluten free.


Kinetic3Amazing Grass Raw Reserve

Kinetic Natural Products Distributor,
Tel: 08450 725 825
E-mail:  [email protected]

Amazing Grass Raw Reserve is a blend of AFA’s (E3Live – fresh blue green algae), spirulina, chlorella, and sea vegetables from the coast of Maine, like kelp and sea lettuce, combined with nutrient-dense cereal grasses, with the addition of 25 billion probiotics per serving at time of consumption, a digestive enzyme complex blend, organic maca, burdock root, ginger, aloe vera, cayenne, organic flax and chia seed. Packed with vitamins, minerals, and phyto-nutrients, all of which assist the body in maintaining healthy organ function, detoxification and immunity. Organic, raw, vegan, GMO- and gluten- free. Available in Original and Berry flavours.


Organico1Organico Sparkling Drinks

Tel: 01189 238768
E-mail:  [email protected]

Our fresh and naturally tasting Sparkling drinks are produced directly in the organic and bio-dynamic orchards of Coteaux Nantais.  The only ingredient is fruit juice that has been carbonated and then corked to hold the fizz.  No added water, sugar, flavour or preservatives. Our popular range of Blueberry Sparkle, Raspberry Fizz, Apple and Lemon Refresher and Bubbly Blackcurrant has now been joined by the sweet tropical taste of our brand new Perfect Passionfruit.


Organico2Organico Olive Oil

Tel: 0118923 8768
E-mail:  [email protected]

Produced in Mora de Toledo, Spain, our extra virgin olive oil is extracted through stone milling by a large workforce to ensure rigorous quality control. A deliciously balanced, clean olive oil, organically grown at harvest. The olives are washed, stoned, pressed slowly at low temperature and then filtered naturally to ensure the oil keeps its goodness and taste. This oil has a fresh crisp taste with peppery after-notes.


Beond Organic Snack Bars

Tel:  01452 729000
E-mail:  [email protected]

Deliciously natural and organic beond bars are packed with fruit and come in a range of six  tantalising flavours, guaranteed to put a smile on your face and a bounce in your step. Each bar is loaded with superfoods, Organic, Vegan, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Soya Free and is certified Organic by the Soil Association. The perfect on the go snack for the whole family.


Indian Araku Valley CoffeeSuma

Suma Wholefoods,
Tel: 01422 313861
E-mail:  [email protected]

The Araku Organic Coffee Project aims to raise coffee quality standards to ensure higher prices and better living. Rising incomes and confidence means that producers have learned to demand equality, education and health for themselves and their families. By participating in the Livelihoods Programme for planting tree saplings, they have shown how small farmers can help in the regeneration of forests and even earn an income from it.

Our Araku tastes delicious. It’s silky smooth and well-rounded, with caramel and brown sugar notes. A high quality, organic, Fairtrade coffee which hits all the right notes. Strength 3.5

About the Author

Jane Wolfe

Deputy Editor
Natural Products News deputy editor Jane Wolfe re-joined NPN in 2013 having previously worked for the magazine as a sub and freelance journalist from its Steyning beginnings.

Articles by Jane Wolfe
Jane Wolfe
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