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Source of Innovation: The Story of Ingredients

By: Sara Mason
Posted: July 31, 2014, from the August 2014 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
Buriti fruit

Buriti fruit

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These are important issues in the market today, because many beauty companies want the assurance of sustainably sourced ingredients. “They want the warmth of knowing they are obtaining sustainable ingredients, and they want the opportunity, should they choose to do so, to market sustainability to the distributors or the consuming public,” Kilham notes.

Naturex has eight sourcing offices throughout the world, each responsible for a different geographic territory, and Kilham will travel with representatives from those offices to check out sourcing and work toward improvements in that sourcing. “We maintain contact with existing suppliers, and constantly are searching for new ones, because it may be possible to make improvements in the chain,” he notes. He meets the people and sees the harvesting and how things are handled, as well as where the oil is pressed. “Controlling the growing and processing of raw materials is crucial in meeting quality requirements. There is no way to shortcut that and actually know in any meaningful way what you are getting and, therefore, what you are selling.”

Naturex also dedicates 1% of gross revenues to community development activity in the villages. Maintaining the good relationships with sourcing programs that are going well gives you long-term durability, according to Kilham. “Sustainability has higher stakes for now and for the future,” he says. “Those companies that do not engage in sustainable sourcing are going to be lost in the dust bins of history, because they fail to understand what the market needs.”

Following the successful launch of its botanical oil range, Naturex is already expanding the line to feature botanical butters along with new premium oils. Referred to by Himalayan inhabitants as the “butter tree,” the chiuri tree is native to Nepal. The main product of the tree is a butter extracted from the seeds and popularly known as chiuri butter. It has a wide range of traditional beauty uses, including skin-healing, moisturizing and even the alleviation of rheumatic pain. It also can easily be incorporated in a range of beauty applications for an exotic twist.

Also a product of Nepal, dhatelo oil has long been used by the native population to soothe and heal skin conditions, and to add strength and shine to hair. Both Nepalese products also are wild harvested through a cooperative that gives villagers a stake in the production.

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