In our Speaker Spotlight series, get to know our speakers before you see them. Find out what trends they predict this year, who they admire in the industry, and why you should attend their session at Natural & Organic Products Europe in April.
What one person or business in the natural & organic industry do you really admire and why?
Since meeting Cheryl in 2011 I’ve been a huge advocate for ethical nutrition. Her passion has encouraged me to always dig deeper and understand the full story from seed to final product.
I admire that she always stays true to her ethics for the company in regard to organic, vegan, non animal tested etc – all these things which make the world a better place and makes sure that good quality and ethical products are being made. She has always supported local independent health stores from the very start and still does today which is important as health stores can act as a hub for the local community.
What do you see as key trends for natural & organic in the coming year?
Four key trends:
- Gut Health – Viridian has chosen probiotics as it’s Ingredient of the Year 2022 because of its potential and ability to make an impact to positive health outcomes from our immunity to skin and even mood, and more. Beneficial bacterial is an area of leading research and this knowledge sharing with consumers is key to helping them understand the link between gut health and our overall wellbeing.
- Looking behind the label – more and more consumers are digging deeper to understand provenance and manufacture of food supplements and beauty products. There’s also a greater appreciation by consumers of the importance of sustainability and the value of local community and being ‘planet-kind’.
- Increasing demand for nutritional beauty support – During 2021 we witnessed 8% annual growth in ingestible beauty products across Viridian’s whole ‘Ultimate Beauty’ category. Specifically developed to support the health and appearance of skin, hair and nails by nourishing your body from the inside, this ethical nutrition range includes an Organic Beauty Tea and Organic Ultimate Beauty Omega Oil, which is certified organic by the Soil Association.
- Innovative supplementation: As well as searching ethical scientific advances in natural beauty involving new ingredients, there’s innovations in the methods of taking supplements. Instead of a one-size fits all, there’s growing movement towards a more tailored approach be it nutritional liquids, drops or powders.
Can you give us an example of what your business is doing to become even more sustainable
Sustainability has been at the heart of Viridian’s ethical philosophies since day one, back in 1999, minimising our impact on the environment and enhancing our ecological contribution through our organic growing and charitable donations.
Viridian continues to source sustainably, and we are always looking for organic options wherever possible. When sourcing new ingredients there is a 130-point check to ensure they are effective, ethical and pure and meet the Viridian criteria.
Viridian is also:
- Keeping our glass jar packaging – infinitely recyclable
- Investing in energy efficient measures at our HQ
- Distributing and partnering with independent health stores to promote local shopping
What’s the most rewarding aspect of your role and the most challenging?
We regularly launch new supplements and I really enjoy the new product development aspect of my role, as it allows me to search for the best quality and ethical ingredients. Often, we are the first to bring an ingredient to the UK market so understanding the human scientific research and digging into the detail is really exciting. Being able to formulate a product that will help lots of people with a given health condition, or simply enhance their everyday health even further is really rewarding.
How important is Natural & Organic Products Europe trade show to the you/industry?
NOPEX is the must-attend trade show for our sector. It is a chance to showcase our innovations, say hello to friends old and new, and celebrate all that is best in our health-and-happiness-enhancing industry.
Why should visitors attend your session at the show?
Sharing in-depth knowledge on the latest ethical and organic innovations and research is one of the key standouts to helping more consumers make sustainable choices.
Key take-homes from the beauty-related panel I am contributing to at NOPEX this year include:
- Why organic isn’t just planet-kind, it can also be highly effective.
- Understanding ethical scientific advances in natural skin care.
- Specific pure ingredients that are leading the way in specialist skincare.
See Aimée Benbow’s session ‘How can organic and natural beauty retailers & brands lean into scientific skincare trends?‘. Register for a trade ticket here.
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