In our Speaker Spotlight series, get to know our speakers before you see them. Find out what trends Heather Jackson predicts 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?
I’ve always had such admiration for the late Dame Anita Roddick DBE, founder of The Body Shop. She was truly ahead of her time and a trailblazer in natural beauty and wellness. Her vision for the menopause in particular was decades ahead of anyone else. I truly believe that were she still with us today, the menopause would be much more normalised.
What do you see as key trends for natural & organic in the coming year?
This industry has long been offering natural menopause solutions, but we’re seeing this break into the mainstream like never before. Natural health is so important for improving the menopause experience, particularly as GenM research shows that 49% of menopausal women have no intention of taking HRT.
It’s so important that we have a wealth of natural choices to support symptoms and help women take control of their menopause. I think this year will see natural products really take their rightful place as fantastic options to help support menopause symptoms.
What’s the most rewarding aspect of your role and the most challenging?
Most rewarding is being able to make a societal difference to the menopause! I’m really proud of the amazing progress we’ve made by engaging the some of most powerful brands in the country to sit up and better serve the menopausal audience.
Most challenging is the flip side of this! Now that we have proved the appetite for this among brands and consumers, the challenge is scaling up and rolling out this model to the world! We want to deliver a global impact with this, as the issue isn’t restricted to the UK.
How important is Natural & Organic Products Europe trade show to the you/industry?
NOPEX is pretty much the main event for organic and natural brands. It’s exciting to see so many fantastic companies all together, from legacy brands to new and exciting innovators in the industry. The natural and organic industry has such a huge role to play in supporting the menopausal audience, who are crying out to be served better. Right now is a unique moment – customer understanding and demand are higher than they’ve ever been before. We need to seize the opportunity.
Why should visitors attend your session at the show?
I want to wake brands up to the amazing opportunity there is to be had by catering to the menopause. I’m also really excited to share about GenM’s M-tick (the world’s first menopause-friendly symbol) and to invite Boots to share how it has been beneficial for them. This is an exciting time for the menopause. By 2025, there will be a billion menopausal women globally! They are currently underserved, not just in products – but in signposting, merchandising, marketing, HR policies and much more.
The menopause impacts every area of business in a purposeful and commercial way. My session will explain exactly how we can respond.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given.
When reading a newspaper, start at the back and work your way to the front. Most people start at the beginning and get bored halfway through. But if you start from the back, odds are as you go about your day, you’ll hear about the big news stories from the front anyway. But having knowledge from the Sport, Business and World news sections towards the back can help lead to really interesting conversations. It also helps you remain curious about life and society, which is really what keeps me ticking!
Tell us a fun fact about yourself that most people don’t know:
I won the Barnsley Beautiful Bonnie Baby competition in 1969 – it all went downhill from there!