APRIL 18 QUESTIONS WITH SHANE WOLF
1. What is your name?
2. What is your occupation?
Global General Manager L’Oréal Hair Care Division, founder of Seed Phytonutrients
3. What was your favorite green memory growing up?
I grew up on a farm, unable to see another house from my own, but able to see nature in all its glory.
4. What did you do before Seed Phytonutrients?
I’ve spent my career in the beauty industry, always hungry for an opportunity to make a real impact. I’m delighted to bring my passion for sustainability and change to the beauty industry.
5. What inspired you to create Seed Phytonutrients?
Seed Phytonutrients came to fruition due to a culmination of partners dedicated to creating a harmonious environment of beauty, agriculture, and sustainable business. A disruptive and innovative brand, Seed Phytonutrients aims to radically shift what is identified as and considered sustainable and natural, as well as begin an important conversation on the beauty industry’s impact on the environment, agriculture, and consumers’ well-being.
6. What makes Seed Phytonutrients unique?
Seed Phytonutrients mission is to plant the seeds of health, well-being, and sustainability for future generations. We strive to protect seeds from over-commercialization, we partner with independent, American organic farmers to harness the power of local seed varieties to create elevated natural products that make people look and feel good.
7. Can you tell us more about how supporting Seed Phytonutrients is helping the global economy?
At Seed, we work with independent, small businesses. From our organic farmers to our packaging and formula suppliers, we are inspired by their agility and ingenuity and I am so proud to partner with this innovative team.
8. We love that you work with local farmers, can you talk to us a bit about that!
We partner with independent organic farmers to harness the power of local seed varieties. Organic farming is a tough business, it takes three years to have an organic farm certified. During that period, farmers can’t market their products as certified organic and startup costs are very high. We are obsessed with supporting our local organic farmers by paying upfront 100% of the crop, regardless of the yield. This allows farmers to reinvest in their farms and plan for their future harvest. We then take the seeds and cold press them to extract the high-quality oils; it’s one of the safest and purest ways as it doesn’t use chemicals or heat, which means all the vitamins and nutrients remain intact.
8. What is the most rewarding and challenging part of your business?
Making tough decisions where we have to balance things that may have an inverse relationship to each other (like achieving the height of packaging sustainability vs. formula performance and stability) is both the most challenging and rewarding part of our business. For example, electing to use natural, food-grade preservatives (vs. no preservative system) allows us to create a product that we believe prioritizes the quality and safety of the user experience. We must maintain accountability while not compromising our standards to deliver the best end-product possible.
9. What is one environmental change you vow to make this year?
I’ve started traveling with bamboo cutlery so that I can avoid SUPs wherever I am.
10. If there was one industry/product that you could make more eco-friendly, what would it be?
The beauty industry!
11. We know you are launching on Earth Day, where can costumers find your product? And what’s next for Seed Phytonutrients?
You can always find us on Seedphytonutrients.com. In the future, look for us wherever sustainable, natural beauty is sold!
12. What’s your favorite book?
Horst Rechelbacher’s Rituals: A Daily Guide to Natural Health and Beauty
13. Where do you turn for your news?
Mother Jones and New York Times, but only online
14. Where on the green scale do you fall?
See answers above! And I am obsessed with getting better all the time
15. Do you lead a vegan lifestyle?
I procure everything I eat as organic, humanely and sustainably as possible, but I am not a vegan.
16. Who would you want to have a conversation with past or present?
Cary Fowler, co-founder of Svalbard Global Seed Vault. He proves to be tough to track down.
17. How does Seed Phytonutrients positively impact the environment?
We believe that beauty can, and should be, sustainable. Each person in the US creates 4.4 pounds of solid waste each day, of which 30 percent is attributed to packaging. In a given year, this equates to roughly 133 pounds of packaging waste; a statistic we wanted to alter. You can think of it like this; our packaging likely started as a cardboard box, and our process gives it a second (or maybe even a third) life, and we think that’s pretty cool. We partnered with Ecologic Brands to create a 100% post-consumer recycled (PCR) paper bottle with a PCR liner. Both elements are recycled and recyclable. The revolutionary paper bottle has been treated with a mineral complex extracted from clay so it can be safely taken into the shower. The entire bottle can be completely recycled.
18. What do you want the legacy of Seed Phytonutrients to be?
That we actually did make a difference. I want to make an impact that ultimately leaves less of an impact.