Down Under Enterprises grows, produces, exports, and markets traceable
and sustainable native Australian essential oils and botanicals grown on our farm, Buhlambar, and from across Australia producing essential oils and botanicals with unique functional and aromatic properties.
This month we bring you a special report on the Top 10 Global Trends impacting Cosmetics and Personal Care markets globally. Many of these trends have a strong link to Sustainability and naturals. We also provide some tips on the Australian botanicals that meet these trends head-on. Register to get a trend-a-day and learn more.
While we are on the subject of Australian botanicals, have you ever wondered why Australia’s plants and animals are SO WEIRD? Take for example a very strange native animal that looks like a cross of a duck and a beaver, but with a pouch like a kangaroo. The platypus is just one our unique animals. So many of our animals are just plain weird! And our plants have developed highly differentiated active properties as well, often with unique fragrances. Read our article on what Charles Darwin had to say about this.
In this newsletter:
Thanks for reading!
NEW: 10 Global Cosmetic Trends - look to Australia’s exotic actives
The Global Natural and Organic Personal Care Products Industry was estimated at 7 billion in 2020. This burgeoning market is projected to reach US$23.6 Billion by 2027, a CAGR of 9.3% over that time period according to Global News Wire.
As the rise of the “Conscious Consumer” elevates awareness – and demand – for natural ingredients, brands can differentiate their products with native Australian Botanicals. Australian botanicals align well with key global trends and evolving consumer values.
Botanicals native to Australia are particularly potent thanks to the harsh extremes of the climate. As an adaptation to Australia’s climate and isolation, these native plants developed highly active properties, often with unique fragrances. In fact, none other than Charles Darwin commented on how peculiar and special Australian flora and fauna were, stating, “Surely two distinct Creators must have been [at] work.”
He hadn’t known it then but most of the plants and animals he had encountered had spent 40 million years evolving their own unique solutions to a common conundrum: how to survive and prosper in the extremes of the Australian climate.
Read more about the quirky biodiversity of Australia’s flora and fauna in our blog.
As ingredients for Personal Care and Home Care products, these exotic properties of Australian botanicals can help differentiate a brand.
Here are the top 10 trends in Beauty and Personal Care in 2022. We have matched these trends with Down Under Enterprises’ extensive range of native Australian botanicals to help you conceive your own distinctive product attributes in alignment with your brand.
Trend 1 - Skin Glow
Trend 2 - Mood-Boosting Fragrance
Trend 3 - Fragrance with functional benefits
Trend 4 - Botanical and Eco-friendly Oral Care
Trend 5 - Vegan
Trend 6 - Upcycled Ingredients
Trend 7- Antibacterial
Trend 8 - Waterless Products
Trend 9 - Carbon Neutral
Trend 10 - Ethical Human
Sandalwood Album Oil a Potent Antioxidant
According to a study recently published in Cosmetics Journal, Sandalwood Album Oil, traditionally known as Indian Sandalwood, with nearly 100% of global legal supply originating from Australia, could be a more potent antioxidant than vitamin E.
This news should interest the global cosmetic industry, supporting new R&D formulations using sustainable ingredients that protect skin against environmental stress.
The researchers reported that Sandalwood album oil possessed antioxidant potential that can scavenge the ROS generated by a free radical generating compound (AAPH).
Subsequent exposure to environmental stressors revealed that Sandalwood album oil possessed superior antioxidant activity (30-40% higher) in comparison to vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol).
Using human skin explants, this study demonstrated that Sandalwood Album oil can also inhibit the pollutant-induced level of MMP-1. These findings indicate that Sandalwood Album oil can potentially serve as a protective and anti-aging active ingredient in cosmetics and dermatology against environmental stressors.
Why are Australian botanicals and wildlife so weird-looking?
Australia’s wildlife was so weird to the 19th-century scientists of the northern hemisphere that it caused one of them, a devout Christian by the name of Charles Darwin, to question his God’s creation. “A disbeliever in everything beyond his own reason might exclaim, ‘Surely two distinct Creators must have been [at] work; their object, however, has been the same’,” Darwin wrote in 1836, after visiting Coxs River at Wallerawang in NSW. A day’s kangaroo hunting, during which he
had stumbled on a potoroo, parrots and a platypus, had blown Darwin’s mind.
Our Farms, Our Ethos
We are pleased to announce that we have retained our EcoVadis Platinum rating for yet another year keeping us in the top 1% of over 75,000 companies evaluated by EcoVadis annually. Increasing our total score even further, this achievement is made possible by the work our team does across our entire organization. From our head office in Sydney, to our warehouses in Australia and United States, and especially at our farms in Australia, our whole team is committed to continuous improvement in our Sustainability profile. We are proud of retaining Ecovadis Platinum for yet another year.
If your company has a preference for working with suppliers demonstrating high Sustainability ratings, request our EcoVadis scorecard and let’s start talking.
Why traceability really matters
Personal Care Products are used by billions of people globally every day. These products contain ingredients from all over the world that have a direct impact on local communities. The extinction of wildlife, water usage, deforestation, child labor and human rights abuse, and many more issues may be hidden within a supply chain - all in the name of a cheaper price.
CASE IN POINT – LEMON MYRTLE OIL
One of our fastest growing Australian essential oils is our 100% Pure Australian Lemon Myrtle Oil. Comprised of approximately 93% citral, this beautiful oil has been called “more lemon than lemon”. But with success comes risk – and increased adulteration. We are now seeing significant quantities of Lemon Myrtle Oil on the market at unrealistic prices. Further investigations have determined this oil to contain significant quantities of “natural citral isomers”; in other words, citral from (much) cheaper sources. The main sources of cheap natural citral are Lemongrass from India, and Litsea cubeba from China.
Supply Chains can be complex to say the least, but we can all play a part in eliminating the injustices that occur and transforming supply chains in a positive way. Transparency is essential to sustainable and ethical supply chains.
Post COVID-19, consumers want to be reassured that companies are paying workers fairly. They are also more interested to learn how brands are addressing rising hunger amid the pandemic reports MINTEL. Consumers want to know that the people who grow, make, package, and deliver goods are fairly compensated.
As a signatory to the UN Global Compact Sustainable Development Goals, Down Under Enterprises helps to make an impact globally, by respecting and valuing the human rights of workers, while setting a standard and example for the global natural ingredients industry.
More locally, we are actively involved with AgriFutures Australia (AFA), an Australian Research & Development organization with a mission to grow the long-term sustainability of Australian rural industries and communities. The resources provided by AFA means farmers can become more successful with a particular crop long-term, rather than switching crops, or even leaving farming and moving to urban centres in search of better jobs.
Our business success depends on creating a sustainable Tea Tree Oil and Australian botanicals industry. We have a long-term interest in ensuring that sustainable farming supports Australian farmers and their communities.
Every single one of our ingredients is fully traceable, from the botanicals that we grow, and those that we source from small farms across Australia. Some of our work involves helping those farmers with their operations, including preparing for certifications to industry standards.
A non-transparent supply chain also impacts the end-consumer. Ingredient adulteration can and does impact the safety and efficacy of the product. With Tea Tree Oil for example, you would only want to use Tea Tree Oil that conforms to the normative Standard ISO 4730: 2017 to ensure expected consumer safety and product efficacy.
For more information on Pure Australian Tea Tree Oil contact us directly.
B Corp Certification in progress
B Corp certification demonstrates a company balances “profit” with “purpose”. We recently completed the B Corp Impact Assessment which addressed our company's impact in the areas of Community, Workers, Environment, Governance and Customers. The results of this Assessment confirm our eligibility. Following our Impact Assessment submission, we are now queuing for a formal, third-party assessment by B Lab which is expected to get underway from June 2022.
B Corps are businesses that meet high standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. B Corp businesses are legally required to consider the impact of their decisions on their workers, customers, suppliers, community, and the environment.
Down Under Enterprises has an established track record of sustainable business practices, recognized by certifying bodies like EcoVadis. Our Platinum EcoVadis Sustainability rating places us in the top 1 percent of over 75,000 businesses audited annually by EcoVadis.
With a number of our customers already holding B Corp Certification, it seemed only right to join them on their journey towards increased Corporate Social Responsibility.
Damien arrives Down Under!
Damien has finally joined us in Sydney, delayed by two years due to the pandemic. Read Damien’s story of working remotely while waiting to relocate from Paris to Sydney.
What motivated you to move from the fragrance world to Australian botanicals?
I always had a high interest in natural products and our nature's greatness. I genuinely wanted to learn more and be part of “REAL” natural botanicals, and share this knowledge.
Australian botanicals have a lot to offer for their remarkable therapeutic properties, potential applications, and the story around them. To play a positive role and assist our customers and partners worldwide, I needed to be ensured that I am offering 100% pure, traceable, and sustainable ingredients. I am proud to take on this new role promoting Australian botanicals, and specifically thanks to Down Under's commitment to nature and our highly valued customers. I firmly believe that what we offer our customers is beyond their expectations. This is a key reason for our long term and trusted business relationships.
When did you take up the position with Down Under Enterprises and how was your arrival to Australia delayed?
I started contracting with Down Under in April 2020, after receiving some great training. The original plan was to emigrate to Australia in May 2020. But due to visa requirements and then COVID restrictions, there was a considerable gap between Australia and France which delayed my departure. In France, I had zero perspective of the upcoming weeks and months of documentation and requirements ahead of me. I needed to bring together so many documents, have them officially translated, and pass English tests to obtain the Australian visa. In addition to this, I also registered for an online TOEFL session for July 2020. I had to fly to Paris for one test, and then drove to Barcelona to take a different test.
I finally had all the required documents so that my lawyer could finalize the visa application, but it was too late. By then the Australian borders were closed due to COVID. I began my long wait for the borders to reopen.
What were the challenges of working remotely for the first 2 years?
Working remotely was new for many people – including for me. The biggest challenge was that I would move to Australia and needed to be ready at a moments notice, but I had no idea of the timing. On top of this, I needed to manage the time difference, get up very early to have direct meetings with the team in Australia - weekly and monthly - typiically late into my night. And my customers in Asia were also working in a very different time zone to me. It became a matter of organizational skills; I had to change my daily planning, I had to plan my life according to these new challenges.
Being a very positive person in life, I would say it was a formative experience, and I am convinced this is an additional value brought to my life.
What were your first impressions upon arriving in Australia?
The first impression I had, and I loved, was to notice the dynamism of Sydney because it represents my mindset. I enjoyed seeing people early in the morning, cafés serving you excellent breakfast and croissants.
How was it meeting the Down Under team in person?
I was more than happy to hug my colleagues after 2 years, but I had the feeling I'd known them forever! We had done so many online meetings and already knew each other "digitally." I was pleased to see their smiles and feel their positive energy – finally.
What are you most looking forward to doing in Sydney outside of work?
Sydney has so many experiences I need to discover. I am most looking to visiting Sydney and its surrounds, going for a nice coastal walk on weekends around Bondi Beach, and having a well-deserved drink on Bondi Beach terraces.
Read Down Under’s perspective as the employer during this time, on LinkedIn The challenges of recruiting internationally and the power of the right fit for people and companies.