Friday, June 4, 2010

Wow, it's been awhile since we posted! It seems the busier we get, the more our little blog suffers.

We hosted St. Marys first ever World Fair Trade Day Coffee Break which was exciting. Our good friends at Harvest Bakery and Cafe handed out Fair Trade coffee and we baked up some Fair Trade brownies and cookies. We didn't get a huge crowd but big enough that we want to do something even more fantastic next year!

More exciting news from the soap studio...we are launching two new bars this month!

"Man Bar" and "Om Bar"....

I will post more details and pics in a couple of weeks so stay tuned!

If you aren't following us on best be starting...we post some pretty sweet 24 hour deals and you won't want to miss out.

Lastly, I (Stacey) am nominated for the Savvy Mom Entrepreneur award and the winner is determined by voters like you. Please check it out and if you see fit....cast us a vote!

Be happy and be well!

Sweet Leaf Bath Co.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Top Ten Reasons To Purchase Fair Trade

1. Fair Trade means fair pay and working conditions for farmers and artisans as well as creating just economic opportunities for marginalized producers.

2. Fair Trade encourages environmental sustainability by using eco friendly farming practices and the use of raw materials found in nature or recycled. Fair Trade supports sustainable practices that minimize our environmental footprint.

3. Fair Trade Protects children by local managers upholding their rights to security, education and play. Business owners respect local laws and social norms and disclose the involvement of children in production.

4. Fair Trade empowers marginalized workers/farmers and artisans by creating access to low cost, advanced capital as well as opportunities for building their technical and business skills.

5. Fair Trade is safe because it promotes integrated farming and management systems that improve soil fertility and preserves valuable eco systems while limiting the use of harmful agrochemicals that present dangers to the farmer's health. This means food that is safer for you and the farmers who grow it!

6. Fair Trade supports communities by working through co-operative structures artisans and farmers are able to invest fair trade earnings into their communities, improving housing, health care and schools.

7. Fair Trade is trade that artisans and farmers can count on. Fair trade is committed to strengthening direct, long term partnerships between buyers and producers. These partnerships provide an avenue for buyers to purchase quality items from people they trust. It offers a sustainable and reliable way for farmers, artisans and their families to improve their livelihoods.

8. Fair Trade connects you to other cultures by introducing you to products that are unique to the places they came from and the people who made them.

9. Fair Trade means sustainable local economies by giving the producers control over their own future. By allowing them to build their own businesses rather than work for a middleman. This means profits stay in their community and are put back into their businesses.

10. Fair Trade means that your purchases matter. It allows you access to high quality products while making a difference in the lives of the people who produced them.

***information courtesy of The Fair Trade Resource Network


Sweet Leaf Bath Co.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Truth in Labelling...

This week we were confronted twice by the question of sodium hydroxide (Lye) listed as an ingredient in our soaps. This was surprising to us considering it is impossible to make cold process soaps without it and quite truthfully, this is the first time we were questioned about it.

When explaining this to our inquiring customers, they named two companies that they truly believed did not use sodium hydroxide in their soap. As a soap maker, knowing that this is impossible, we set out to investigate. How was it, that companies were making this claim? Were they being deceitful, unlawful, dishonest? The answer is no, none of the above.
As we expected, they are in fact using the lye, but having been at this longer than us, probably having experienced the same questions, they found a way to be truthful in listing their ingredients without scaring people away.

Let me first fill you in on why sodium hydroxide is a key component in soap making, and how it's not as scary as it sounds...

Soap is made by saponifying fats or oils (ie olive, coconut, palm) with an alkali (either sodium hydroxide for bars, or potassium hydroxide for liquid soaps.)
The saponification process separates the glycerin from the fatty acids, and the fatty acids combine with the sodium to create soap. The hydroxide forms water. The important point here is that there is NO sodium hydroxide left in a finished bar of soap. A necessary ingredient that plays it's role and disappears.

We firmly believed when we created our line that we wanted to be very transparent in our labelling, I think that in doing so, we also need to be able to explain the process in an honest and truthful way. We listed sodium hydroxide not because it's in our soap, but because it was used to create it.

What we have found in these other companies who also are very transparent in their labelling is that they list their ingredients as they truly appear in their soaps. "Glycerin" (because that is the byproduct of saponification.) Or simply, saponified oils of olive, coconut, palm....(because that's truly what is left in the bar.)
No dishonesty there, they didn't list lye, simply because like ours, there isn't any left in their soap.

I am not bothered when we are questioned about what we are using in our soaps and why, I think that it's a learning experience for both us and the person asking. I think that allows us all to become more knowledgeable and aware of what we are putting on our bodies. We should always question things that we're unsure of.

I hope that you have found this beneficial, ( I know that we have!)

Sweet Leaf Bath Co.

P.S. We are deeply saddened by the tragedy in Haiti, at the same time, very much uplifted by the outpouring of support and donations made. It truly makes me proud to be a human being when strangers are willing to reach out to help those in need.
Our thoughts and prayers are with them...

Friday, January 8, 2010

Sweet Soaps....

Wow, a new year! I hope you have all had a warm and happy holiday season...
2009 was a great year for us hear at Sweet Leaf Bath Co., our products received Fair Trade Certification through TransFair Canada, we were welcomed into some new stores and our online store went live.
We are very much looking forward to 2010! We're already busy brainstorming our new scent creations down in the soap studio and we know that you're going to love them!
We will keep you posted, but for now, I will leave you with some of our soaps to browse...
Sweet Leaf Bath Co.