Could Natural Become the PC Baseline

The natural and organic trend can be seen across all CPG categories, particularly in the personal care sector, where natural products are drawing increasing interest. Ido Leffler, global CEO and "Carrot Lover" of Yes To Inc., the marketer of the Yes To Carrots brand, has seen his company's reach extend in just a few years from 16 stores to more than 25,000 stores. In speaking with Jon Benninger, Virgo Publishing, at SupplySide West 2009, Leffler noted the evolution of both technologies and ingredients including preservatives and surfactants is driving more innovation in the category.

Further, he said, as consumer interest rises, natural and organic may well become a standard for entry to the market. "It is going to become minimum from an overall formulation point of view," he projected. "If you can get the pricing to work and everyone is buying it from a manufacturing point of view, then you'll be able to see mass brands at a good price and ... it will just be how good is your brand to be able to really compete in this space."

Leffler added his R&D team has found attending trade shows such as SupplySide to be important from an innovation perspective, noting, "You can search the web and you can walk the stores as much as you like, but when you can in a very short space of time, have direct contact, hear the elevator pitch, hear what works and what doesn't work, you can make a decision and take it forward and you're not wasting anybody's time."