Jam-packed lanes. Backups forcing long lines of people to inch forward at a snail’s pace. Rubber-necking at something surprising on the sidelines. Nope, I’m not talking about my typical commute on New Jersey’s notoriously crowded highways. I’m describing the busiest aisles of Natural Products Expo West 2015, held March 5–8 in sunny Anaheim, CA.
I was driving to the office one Tuesday morning when I heard a news report that ended up occupying my attention for the week to come. Results from DNA testing of herbal supplements—requested by New York’s attorney general Eric Schneiderman—painted a dark picture of the supplement industry. Several store brand products had reportedly failed identity tests by including ingredients in the formulas that weren’t supposed to be there and by leaving out important active herbal ingredients. The commentator implied in a mocking tone that companies had tried to circumvent those “pesky DNA tests.”
I recently heard that only 8% of people who make New Year’s resolutions keep them. If you’re looking for a goal you can actually accomplish, consider one that’s within your reach and beneficial to those far and wide: lobbying on behalf of your company and this industry.
Possibly one of the most famous Person of the Year recognitions in the United States was actually a bandage intended to cover up a faux pas. A ground-breaking aviator who made a pioneering trans-Atlantic flight had inadvertently not made it onto the cover of a popular news magazine that year (1927). To correct their oversight, the editors took a “better late than never” approach by putting him on the cover at yearend and giving him the honor of Person of the Year. Since then, this cover story has been a December tradition, naming the person who most affected the year’s news, either good or bad.
About a decade or so ago, when Internet buying was starting to get really hot, I remember hearing of an experiment. A man tried living for a year without leaving his house, even banning face-to-face contact with anyone. The challenge was to see how easy it would be to buy everything he needed to live—from apples to toilet paper—online only and to communicate only through e-mail, chat rooms and other Web services.
Welcome to the 2014 edition of the WholeFoods Who’s Who of Manufacturers and Suppliers, the only reference tool of its kind in the natural products industry. In these pages, you will find listings of hundreds of companies and thousands of individuals who work for these companies.
Over 11,150 Facebook comments. Within 48 hours of the initial post, that’s how many fans turned to the Annie’s Facebook page to voice their opinions over the announcement that General Mills was buying the 25-year-old company.
Let’s say you traded your quiet ho-hum life for one filled with fame and glory. Sure, the dollars that come with prominence in our society are bountiful, but after a while, thorns would start to grow. Lost quality time with those who knew you from the beginning would weigh heavily, intense pressure to excel would build, and even the simple pleasure of “being yourself” would become a distant memory. And then, there’s the unsettling feeling of knowing that one day, you could fall out of favor with the public. Picking up the pieces after such rejection would be crushing.
I have become so accustomed to seeing negative headlines about dietary supplements that they barely jump off the page at me anymore. But recently, I saw a story with such a brazenly false headline on a news/opinion Web site that I couldn’t help but click through: “Your Probiotic Is Probably B.S.”