Say hello to Seed Phytonutrients, a young company with some seriously old-school values. Founded in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, with a little help from their good friends over at L’Oreal, this mission-driven beauty and personal care company is planting the seeds of health, well-being, and sustainability with every one of their innovative products.
Seed’s philosophy is simple. Everything they do as a company furthers their four brand obsessions–from minimal plastic packaging to sustainable business practices. Join us below as we break down what gives this brand the EarthHero seal of approval–plus, a Q & A with our founder, Ryan Lewis and Brad Farrell from Seed!
Obsession #1: Promoting Natural Beauty
Seed knows that natural beauty and healthy living go hand in hand. How you feel and what you choose to put into, and onto, your body has a huge impact on the way we look and treat ourselves! That’s why Seed uses the natural power of seeds as the main ingredients in their products, as seeds contain naturally occurring high concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, phytosterols, carotene, and vitamins A, C, D, and E. By using the cold press and expeller method to extract these nutrients from the seed, they maintain the true integrity of the plant, with the highest levels of purity. This creates sulphate-free, plant based, cruelty-free, vegan, gluten-free, and paraben-free formulas, with a delicate natural fragrance and natural ingredients (that’s a mouthful!). After the seed goes through the cold presser, Seed Phytonutrients returns whatever pulp is left to their farmers to be used as organic feed for animals.
Obsession #2: Leading Environmental Sustainability
As non-recyclable plastic pollution becomes a bigger and bigger problem for our planet, companies like Seed Phytonutrients and partner Ecologic have stepped up to revolutionize plastic-packaged personal care. Their revolutionary shower-friendly bottles feature a 100% post-consumer recycled cardboard and compostable exterior coated with minerals from clay to be waterproof, alongside a thin, post-consumer recycled plastic liner that can be recycled at the end of its life. The result? Shampoo and conditioner bottles contain 60% less plastic than most typical personal care bottles. The interior plastic is so thin, 95% thinner than conventional plastic bottles, that it actually collapses as it’s used!
Plus, they use plastic-free recycled and recyclable packaging wherever possible–such as balms, serums, and soaps. When paired with EarthHero’s recycled and recyclable cardboard shipping packaging, you get a truly zero waste shower experience!
Obsession #3: Supporting Independent American Organic Farmers
To become a certified organic farm here in America, you need to wait up to a whopping 3 years after switching over to organic practices before you can market the yield as certified organic. This can create financial risk for the farmer, and that paired with the high startup costs of switching to organic in the first place often leads to farmers switching back to conventional agriculture. Seed wanted to support the brave organic farmers that are putting their livelihood on the line for the sake of the planet, and dedicated their business model to doing just that. By paying for the seeds and 100% of their farmers crops up front, regardless of yield, they allow the farmers to reinvest in their farms and plan for future crops–instead of worrying about their current yield.
Independent farmers like Linda Shanahan and Eric Vander Hyde of Barefoot Botanicals grow some of the sunflowers used for Seed Phytonutrients’ products that contain sunflower seed oil. Their farm, just two miles away from Seed’s Doylestown headquarters, gets regular visits from the Seed team, who pays a fair, pre-negotiated price upon planting. This lets Linda and Eric plan for the future, increasing the long-term sustainability of organic farming. At the end of the day, it’s about so much more than just high-quality skin and hair care products–it’s about the family owned farms all over our country.
Obsession #4: Preserving Seed Diversity
Did you know that over the last 100 years, we’ve lost 94% of our planet’s seed diversity? Diversity, in both plant and animal species, is highly important because it is that diversity that protects them from insects and pests, diseases, changes in climate, and natural disaster. Through their partnership with Hudson Valley Seed Company, Seed Phytonutrients is taking on seed diversity by putting a little surprise in every compostable shower-friendly bottle. You guessed it, it’s seeds! After you’ve used up all the product in your bottle, remove and compost the post-consumer cardboard exterior to reveal a packet of heirloom herb seeds, such as sweet basil, thyme, lemon basil, and wild arugula.
Hudson Valley Seed Company, founded by Ken Greene, was founded off of a revolutionary idea to preserve seed diversity: create a library of seeds to share with the community. Originally called the Hudson Valley Seed Library, Ken and his partner, Doug Muller, have been purveying organic, heirloom, and open-pollinated plants since 2008. They commission artists to design beautiful covers for their seed packets and include planting instructions and a brief history of the plant itself to go inside Seed’s shower-friendly bottles. The varieties chosen are easy to grow with any climate, soil, or experience level–with hopes that these little seed packs will open someones eyes to the importance of farming. In the words of Ken, “Whether a person plants the seeds or gives them to someone else, I hope they’ll take a moment to read the pack and think about where seeds come from,” he says. “Even when you’re buying a bottle of shampoo that has plant essences in it, before the farmer, there was a seed.”
Q & A with Brad Farrell
We love everything the forward-thinking folks are doing over at Seed Phytonutrients, so we invited them to EarthHero office in Boulder, Colorado to chat about some of the awesome initiatives they’re working with! Watch the full interview between our founder, Ryan Lewis, the VP of Global Brand Marketing at Seed, Brad Farrell below.