I love the natural health industry. I’ve been in this industry since I was 16 years old and I cannot imagine anything more important that I could be doing than nourishing people’s bodies, minds and spirits.
When I was younger, this passion took me to the west coast of Canada, where I worked with my dad’s natural health food company, and eventually back to Toronto in the 80s, where I opened a health food store on Church Street. The experience of having my own stores and helping people, some facing death as the HIV crisis hit, taught me a great deal and shaped the values for what would become Genuine Health. What we do matters, how we treat people matters, what we put in the bottle matters, and how we treat the planet matters.
Genuine Health is now in its 26th year. Over the years, I’ve seen a lot of things happen. Right now it’s wonderful to see people changing the way that they’re eating and taking care of themselves. But all this change has attracted interest from large multinational companies.
You may (or may not) be surprised to learn that many natural health product companies you know and love are now owned by large multinational companies like Nestle, Clorox, Bayer and Proctor and Gamble.
(Yes, your natural health supplement could be made by a pharmaceutical company.)
To me, it’s interesting because these companies are a big reason why we started in the first place. The natural health product industry came about because we were looking for alternatives to these companies’ products – and we sought out alternatives to the ingredients that they used (like sugar and food additives, harsh chemicals and isolated drugs) and big budget marketing strategies.
So as one of the pioneers of this industry, we inevitably think… what’s going to happen? Will the natural health product industry be able to influence and change these larger companies, or will these larger companies change our industry? At this point, I think it’s too early to tell.
My hope is that the small natural health product companies start to influence their parents to make healthier, more innovative products that drive innovation in the industry and are made available to more people.
Here’s the good news: We are still Canadian. And we’re family owned and operated. We always have been.
This consolidation has made us more passionate about being independent. It’s made us more focused about telling our story about product quality, innovation and research, and how we’ve always wanted to help people get healthy and love how they feel through properly nourishing their bodies.
At Genuine Health, we are so fortunate that we have the opportunity to change people’s lives every day, and we take that responsibility very seriously. So much so that’s worth saying again…what we do matters, how we treat people matters, what we put in the bottle matters, how we treat the planet matters, and providing you with the latest credible information matters, so that you can make the best choices for your health.
There is a big question mark about what the future will hold for the natural health product industry. While we wait to see what happens, Genuine Health is going to continue to do what we do – touching more people and teaching them about what good health means by making innovative and effective natural products that make a difference.
We’ve been in this industry for over 25 years, and we’ve learned a lot in that time. As we grow, we want to continue to reach more people, giving them more access to natural health products, and helping them feel so great that they inspire people in their family and community to do the same. For us, it’s about using health to create a better world. That’s why we’re proud to be a BCorp, a company that uses business as a force for good.
Bottom line: We love this country, we love making products that make you love how you feel, and we look forward to making amazing products for years and years to come.