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Organic Products Market Showing Recovery


New Tisserand Range Inspired by National Trust


MayaGold Belize Launches Sustainable Sourcing Project




Organic Products Market Showing Recovery

Sales of organic food and drink rose by 2.8% in 2013 after successive years of decline. Growth was fuelled by strong growth among independent retailers and healthy online sales.

The organic products market in the UK was worth GBP 1.79 bn (EUR 2.15 bn) in 2013, up from GBP 1.64bn (EUR 1.97 bn) in 2012 according to the 2014 Organic Market Report from the Soil Association.

The growth is ahead of the overall grocery sales for 2013, which slowed to just 2.1%.There are signs that the trend is set to continue this year - organic sales in January were up by 2.5%, outperforming overall grocery sales which slumped by 3.2%.

During recent tougher economic times organic product purchases with a premium price were among the first food items to be ditched as consumers sought to save money on their weekly shopping.

In 2012 organic product sales fell by 1.5% and in the previous year they slumped by 3.7%. At their height in 2008, before the start of the recession, sales of organic products totalled GBP 2.1 bn (EUR 2.5 bn). The small rise in 2013 reverses the ongoing slide in the face of ongoing tough economic conditions, compared to Fairtrade product sales, which have been more resilient.

But the organic products market is still dwarfed by the size of the overall food and drink sector, the largest manufacturing segment in the UK and now worth GBP 92 bn (EUR 110 bn), according to the Food and Drink Federation.

Independent retailers have led the way in organic food sales, reporting growth of almost 7% (6.9%) to almost GBP 10m (EUR 12m) per week. Online sales continued to grow strongly with Ocado seeing an increase in sales of 10.4% . Of the supermarkets, Sainsbury's - the UK's biggest organic retailer with a hefty 29% market share - enjoyed a 7% increase in sales of its own-label organic products, closely followed by Waitrose where sales were 6.5% through the expanding Duchy brand. More than half of all baby food sold is now organic.

Four out of five households now buy organic produce, the Soil Association said, with younger shoppers under 34 willing to spend the most on organic products.

Rob Sexton, chief executive of Soil Association Certification, said: "To see the organic market showing such strong signs of growth, particularly when grocery sales as a whole are slowing, shows just how much potential there is in the organic sector. Both the growth in the organic market and the accelerating growth of products carrying the Soil Association logo further highlight the growing public demand for organic and food logos that they can trust."

The UK's largest retailer, Tesco, said the figures mirrored its own experience of "significant" organic food growth. Sales of organic bananas were up by a massive 60% year on year, pink lady apples and melons up by 20%, lemons and grapes rising by 10% and carrots and potatoes 5%.

OM Comment
The organic products market is showing positive growth as the UK economy recovers from the financial crisis. Consumer expenditure on organic foods is rising, and is expected to continue to rise as confidence returns. However, it remains to be seen who will capitalise on the upturn: domestic growers or exporters? With low interest from domestic producers to convert to organic farming, the UK market could be targeted again by exporters.

An update on the European market for organic products will be given in the Sustainable Foods Summit. The next edition will be hosted in Amsterdam on 5-6 June. More details are on the website


Source: The Guardian / OM



New Tisserand Range Inspired by National Trust

Tisserand Aromatherapy has announced its first products in a five-year collaboration with the National Trust. Infused with pure essential oils, the Tisserand Aromatherapy Inspired by National Trust range has been blended by hand to recreate the natural aromas of gardens and parks cared for by the National Trust.

The first products in the collection will be perfume roller balls, bath oils and scented sachets , each available in four fragrances: Rose Garden (essential oils of rose and peach with a hint of sandalwood for a harmonising effect); Lavender Walk (essential oils of lavender and chamomile, both known for their calming properties); Citrus Escape (essential oils of lemon, orange and mint, all known for their uplifting benefits); and Cedar Retreat (essential oils of cedar, clove and sandalwood, known for their relaxing properties).

“With such a strong understanding of flowers, plants and essential oils, Tisserand Aromatherapy is the perfect partner for this project,” said Phillippa Green, Brand Licensing Manager at the National Trust. “They have created fragrances that beautifully capture the essence of all that is special about a visit to a favourite National Trust garden or park.”

The products will be available from April 2014 and each purchase will support the National Trust’s work as an independent charity

OM Comment
Innovation plays a key role in the beauty industry. By partnering with National Trust, Tisserand has set the foundations to develop novel lines of aromatherapy products. Marketing such products will be the major challenge, especially outside the UK where the National Trust is not well known.

Related Report:
#1203-60 The UK Market for Natural & Organic PC Products

Source: Cosmetics Business / OM



MayaGold Belize Launches Sustainable Sourcing Project

MayaGold Belize, a UK-based non-profit organisation, is launching its IndieGoGo campaign to raise US $0.8m for a unique social development programme in the Central American country of Belize.

The 60-day IndieGoGo campaign started on 1st February 2014 and aims to raise US $800,000 as part of $1.3m round of second-stage capital funding. These funds will be used to acquire a site in Belize for the development of an extensive 250 acre organic cocoa estate.

"As a social enterprise we will deliver a range of economic and environmental benefits over the duration of the programme, like creation of jobs, training and economic benefits as well balancing these benefits with the interests of our supporters," says Colin Stanford -Francis, founder of MayaGold Belize.

"You could say cocoa runs in my blood," says Mr Stanford-Francis who is the grandson of cocoa farmers. "When I was growing up, I often asked myself why my grandparents had to toil so hard growing cocoa on their estate for so little return." He realized that much of the blame lies with world's commodity markets, which give small cocoa producers such a raw deal. Crop disease, uneconomic smallholdings, poor-quality beans and government indifference also play their part in the declining interest in growing cocoa.

By cultivating 250 acres using modern methods and premium beans, MayaGold Belize hopes to stem the decline and have a major positive impact on cocoa production in Belize, where the average farm size is only 12 acres. MayaGold Belize will produce a range of branded cocoa products from premium cocoa beans grown on its own estate.

"With a highly developed organic chocolate marketplace creating a growing demand for cocoa, particularly the high-quality Criollo and Trinitaro beans, we can achieve a higher price by adding value," says Mr Stanford-Francis.

He sees this type of vertical integration as key to achieving a higher return than if they were to export the beans as commodity products. The profits that will be generated in the long term will be ploughed back into developing the social enterprise model and benefiting the local economy. Because it will take up to five years to harvest the first cocoa crop, MayaGold Belize will also market itself as an ecotourism destination, with the revenue from tourism activities being used to cover operating costs over the start-up period.

"Generating a revenue stream from ecotourism is critical to the success of the programme until we can start to benefit from cocoa production," says Mr Stanford-Francis. The lodge will have a dream location, with a dense backdrop of rainforest stretching out to the Maya mountains and looking out on to the Caribbean Sea. They are looking to create a facility where people can visit holiday and see the work of the estate and understand the work that goes into cocoa production and the tropical forests.

Related Article: Asia Lagging Behind in Sustainable Sourcing of Cosmetic Ingredients

Source: News Release













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