The need to protect the environment from plastic and chemicals is something that is firmly lodged in the public’s consciousness in 2019, thanks to ‘the Attenborough effect’ and the power of the internet for sharing information. Recently, the spotlight has been shining on the environmental impact of period products, too.
As the inventors of the world’s first certified organic tampon, Natracare has witnessed 30 years of changing attitudes towards periods, and has laid the groundwork for millions of women to have healthier periods in the UK and beyond. So what’s the story behind plastic-free pads and organic tampons?
Susie Hewson founded Natracare in 1989, when there were no alternatives to the chemical-laden and plastic-filled period products flooding the market. When she discovered how toxic conventional period products really were, Susie was led by her solution-seeking spirit and got stuck into researching raw materials and safer methods for their processing.
Two years later in 1990, one pallet of regular digital tampons and one pallet of super digital tampons were sent to the co-operative wholesaler, Suma. Now, Natracare sells 1.5 million packs of their products a year in the UK and 17.5 million packs worldwide. Natracare’s product range spans 31 organic, natural and plastic-free products, and these are stocked in over 70 countries.
This success story is testament to the power of doing good – and how, when consumers are presented with an option that is better for people and the planet, they will choose it!
Natracare is known as a brand to trust, and with good reason – Natracare is ethical and environmental right down to its (absorbent) core.
Susie Hewson commented, “I pioneered brand activism in the feminine hygiene industry. And I have the scars to prove it! Natracare evolved out of my own campaigns against the use of toxic chemicals, synthetics, and plastics – as well as their role in women’s health problems. Seeing activism coming from all sides – individuals, organisations and brands – encourages people to think more critically about their consumer choices.”
Susie added: “Our brand activism has always been about empowering people to make the right choices for their bodies and creating better outcomes for ecology. We have helped create global standards for organic and natural menstrual products – this sort of change paves the way for others, which in turn, helps to create shifts within the industry – its work I am very proud of.”
Natracare is celebrating 30 years at Natural & Organic Products Europe – and there will be vegan cake! Come by and visit Susie and the team at stand C20 to hear our revolutionary stories from 30 years in the business.
Notes to editors
Natracare is the first company in the world to provide plastic-free, certified organic cotton tampons and totally chlorine-free sanitary pads and panty liners. Natracare products are biodegradable and can even be composted. Susie Hewson created the brand in 1989 in response to the growing danger to human health and the environment from dioxin pollution in the pulping industries with the chlorine bleaching of paper products.
The Vegetarian Society is a British organisation founded in 1908. They provide resources and support vegetarian and vegan lifestyles. They certify products and/or companies as suitable for vegans and vegetarians. Read more at vegsoc.org.