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A “Green” Lovers Paradise: Natural Products Expo West 2013

Rudi's Bakery at Expo West 2013! Organic. Natural. GMO Free. These are words that most health conscious folks are accustomed to searching out when purchasing dinner at the market or choosing a favorite face cream at the beauty supply store. Sometimes hidden and not so obvious, these scrupulous shoppers pick through item after item diligently scanning their ingredients and back labels. At this years Natural Products Expo West 2013 trade show, the words were displayed with pride with giant signs decorating most booths like a celebrity endorsement. This was my third year at Expo West. I came hungry and excited to try all the healthy foods that each booth was dishing out like the amazing meat substitutes like Gardien, natural breads from Ozery bakery, and healthy snacks from Guacamame (made with non GMO edamame). However, I was disappointed by the lack of home and beauty products that I saw. There are so many great products out there that present themselves as a brand to be taken seriously by all consumers such as Method (whom was there) and Malin and Goetz. However, the product aisles were strewn with companies touting typical earthtone products that would have a hard time catching the eye of the average consumer outside a natural product store. The categories that did seem to bring their A-game were those in the pet and kids section. Fun and whimsical packaging exploded throughout these sections. Packaging that would appeal to children of all ages – large call outs of their healthy missions that would make even the most discerning parent chose healthy. A few stand outs were Crofters Organic Spreads, Rudi’s Bakery and Pawtriotic Dog Treats. My hope is that year after year more brands will dare to break away from their tried and true customer. That brands will continue to work to appeal to a larger audience who will come to learn about - and love - organic and natural products; and still wear their certified organic and non GMO labels like badges of honor. After all, these products are the way to go in order to lower your risk for cancer!

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