What is the soil association? Why we only buy ingredients that have been soil association approved.

March 31, 2019

What is the soil association? Why we only buy ingredients that have been soil association approved.

What are Organic Standards?

Next time you visit a supermarket, take a look at the food labels. You'll see plenty of claims about sustainability and welfare, but amongst them, the organic logo stands out as the only one underpinned by law. All organic food and drink sold in the EU must meet the EU Organic Regulation - shown by the green leaf logo on pack. You can find a summary of what the EU standards guarantee here.

Soil Association certified products must legally comply with the EU Organic Regulation. They must also meet additional higher standards – as shown by the Soil Association logo. 

We only buy ingredients that have been Soil Association approved this means so much more than just using organic ingredients. Their accreditation stands for:


- Animal testing

- GM ingredients

- Controversial chemicals

- Parabens and Phthalates

- Synthetic colours, dyes or fragrances



- Sustainably sourced organic ingredients

- Using natural colours and fragrances from plants and flowers

- Transparent manufacturing processes

- Biodegradable ingredients

- Minimal packaging with maximum

recycled content

- Protecting wildlife and biodiversity


A recent consumer survey of 1,000 people conducted by the Soil Association, found that 77% of consumers would be reassured by genuine organic accreditation. The survey also found that consumers would be more likely to purchase an organic product with accreditation and would make them think positively about the brand and the retailer stocking that brand.


Organic or natural, or maybe not?

Your skin is the largest organ of your body, and what you put on it is likely to be absorbed into the bloodstream. Yet unlike with organic food, which must adhere to strict EU standards, there are no legal standards for the use of the terms 'organic' or 'natural' on beauty products. This means in practice that any brand or beauty product can be labelled as ‘natural’ or ‘organic’ even if it contains virtually no organic or natural ingredients. This is wrong, we pride ourselves on transparency and honesty, our entire range is made using 99% organic ingredients and is 100% natural. The brands using these potentially misleading labels, on products ranging from moisturising shampoos to sunscreens to night creams, need to #ComeCleanAboutBeauty.


What are the 'Terrible Ten'?

The research found that 74% of people said they would feel they were choosing a product which was free from nasties if it said organic on the label. Yet the reality is quite different. A leading independent toxicologist reviewed the ingredients we found in products which say organic on the label and identified the Terrible Ten: Ingredients which have been shown in wider use to cause problems such as allergies, hormone disruption, or harm to the development of unborn babies. Emeritus Professor Vyvyan Howard of the Centre for Molecular Bioscience at Ulster University, who assessed the ingredients used in the potentially misleadingly labelled products and came up with the ‘Terrible Ten’, said: “I was shocked to find ingredients which could contain human carcinogens in products with labels which could misleadingly suggest that they might be organic. Genuine organic products are independently certified and I would encourage consumers to choose those to be sure they are keeping away from ingredients included in the Terrible Ten.”


This blog has been written using information from the Soil Association website

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