Healthy, organic, pesticide-free food… we hear a lot about the importance of good choices when it comes to diet. Nutritionists, chefs, dietitians, scientists, policymakers, farmers and more raise their voices around the need to opt for food which benefits people and planet and avoid toxins. While far from mainstream, as the food discourse is rapidly and deservedly becoming, safer and healthier body care and cleaning products are also now on the radar screens of many. But what about our beds? The place where we spend hours upon hours each night? That which we are pressed up against while seeking to restore our bodies? Where is the dialogue around health and mattresses? A mattress is about so much more than mere comfort. Unbeknownst to the masses, most mattresses contain a plethora of harmful chemicals. Why would you – or anyone – knowingly sleep on toxins? Well, therein lies the problem: people do not even know to think about this issue. If[…]Read More
This is a common misconception. We are required to pass all State and Federal testing, but we are not required to use a flame barrier to do so. The primary filling material used in most mattresses (but never Naturepedic) is polyurethane foam – a highly flammable petroleum-based material. In fact, the National Association of State Fire Marshals refers to it as “solid gasoline.” Due to its high flammability, polyurethane foam is typically treated or wrapped with fire retardant chemicals. Some of these chemicals introduce health and toxicity concerns. In fact, most manufacturers don’t even disclose their fire retardant ingredients. At Naturepedic, we don’t like harsh chemicals, and we certainly don’t like fire retardant chemicals! We consider the best form of fire protection to be superior product design that avoids the need for these chemicals in the first place. Organic cotton, for example, is a far superior filling material and is significantly less flammable. Through extensive research and creative product design,[…]Read More
The Blue Cure Foundation announced the second annual campaign to “Light it Blue” in honor of Prostate Cancer Awareness Month this September. This summer, Blue Cure will again be leading the charge to light the White House blue, in order to encourage preventative measures to stop cancer before it starts. The “Light it Blue” campaign asks supporters to sign the Change.org petition: (http://chn.ge/1eDsb3d) petitioning our President to light the White House blue one September evening, and to encourage others to join and sign by sharing the #lightitblue hashtag and petition link on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Custom Light it Blue graphics and further information are available here: www.whitehouseblue.org. In 2014, the push began as a drive to collect 100,000 signatures to petition the White House to light blue for an evening in September 2014. For 2015, Blue Cure announces an even larger goal, challenging supporters to petition their state capitols, significant local buildings and universities blue for an evening in[…]Read More
Natural foods store chain Whole Foods publicly published a list of Unacceptable Ingredients for Food. This list alphabetically spells out ingredients like disodium dihydrogen EDTA the retailer finds inappropriate for food or packaging, ingredients not in line with healthy living. Panera Bread did something similar, publishing a No No list of ingredients the restaurant/bakery chain has committed to removing from its offerings by the end of 2016 to make its food even healthier for consumers. Panera, in fact, was one of the first to move toward transparency, becoming the first national restaurant chain to disclose caloric content on its menu. When you think about it, while you can read a food label on a can of soup in a store and get the ingredients and information on calories, fat, sodium, and more, that level of transparency has largely been missing from restaurants. And consumer products. As you read this, you’re probably looking at some form of screen — on a[…]Read More
Switzerland eats the most certified organic food per person than any other country, and beginning July 10, 2015 a pact signed with the U.S. will allow organic products certified in the U.S. to be sold as organic Switzerland, and vice versa. The U.S.-Switzerland Organic Equivalency Agreement eliminates the need for dual fees, inspections and paperwork yet continues to uphold organic standards. Previously, equivalency arrangements for American organic food were signed with Korea in 2014, Japan in 2013, the European Union (EU) in 2012 and Canada in 2009. Switzerland, however, is not a member of the EU, which presented an obstacle to organic trade between the U.S. and the organic food-loving country. The Organic Trade Association (OTA) was instrumental in working with government agencies in getting the agreement passed. According to Robert Anderson, Senior Trade Advisor for OTA, this arrangement will help streamline organic trade between continental Europe and the U.S., both which often use Swiss organic ingredients (like delicious chocolate).[…]Read More
It’s clear that many consumers are demanding more from their products regarding health and safety, as they should. I created Naturepedic along with my sons to in order help meet that demand.
Whether a company enters the market already focused on healthier materials like we did, or whether a company decides along the way to green their offerings, resources exist to help them in their journey.
Recently I was invited to speak on a webinar sponsored by the Sustainable Furnishings Council, a trade organization that supports companies in the home furnishings sector looking to make a healthier impact. Also on this presentation was Robert Demianew of Control Union Certifications who discussed the Global Organic Textile Standard, or GOTS, and Dale Read, President of the Specialty Sleep Association, who discussed the new BedFax program.
For my part, I discussed the existing obstacles to good health facing consumers today when purchasing mattresses. Of particular note, I discussed the widespread use of flame retardant chemicals, why they are used, why they are problematic, and how Naturepedic found a way to not use them while still passing all flammability standards.
I also discussed how GOTS certification and BedFax service provides verification and transparency for consumers, topics elaborated on by the other speakers.
GOTS, BedFax, even the Sustainable Furnishings Council, aren’t creating a demand for healthier products. People already desire them. Instead, they are helping consumers identify the healthier products on the market and trust that these products meet their needs, and they are also helping companies to build better products and communicate their message. It’s all part of the same goal: helping to make our homes and planet a healthier place to live.
Watch the webinar recording now:
Video Link: https://vimeo.com/131129086
The cotton in Naturepedic products is strictly organic, grown and processed to the exacting standards of the Global Organic Textile Standard. That means you get a mattress or bedding without the pesticides, toxic dyes, GMOs, formaldehyde and other chemicals associated with conventional cotton. That’s great for you, but did you know it might also be great for the climate? In a white paper published by the Rodale Institute, research suggests that a global switch to organic farming methods could capture in excess of 100% of the amount of current annual CO2 emissions. Rodale calls it “regenerative organic agriculture,” and the secret is in the soil. What this means is that, in theory, a widespread switch to organic farming practices, by capturing more of the CO2 than is produced each year, could begin to draw down the excess greenhouse gasses associated with the climate change. Regenerative organic agriculture uses organic practices such as composting, cover crops, residue mulching and crop rotation.[…]Read More
As Sustainability Officer for Naturepedic, my role is to go beyond the certified organic products we make to strengthen our relationship to the larger sustainability picture including business practices and advocacy. When things go really well, I get to compare notes with others also passionate about sustainability. When things go really, really well, I get to promote sustainability at the U.S. Senate in Washington, D.C. with Jessica Alba. Thursday, June 18 went really, really well. Serving as a Naturepedic representative for the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC), I spent the day alongside actress and advocate for safer products Jessica Alba, co-founder of The Honest Company, and a team of talented business professionals, traveling the halls of the U.S. Senate to meet with a variety of senators. As members of the ASBC, we made the case for sensible reform to the outdated Toxics Substances Control Act (TSCA). Currently, a draft bill, S. 697, is being considered in the Senate. In[…]Read More
Flame retardant chemicals show up everywhere, and in places never intended: rivers, wildlife … and children. Flame retardant chemicals have been linked to a variety of potential health and developmental problems that include cancer and damage to the bodies’ hormonal systems. Children appear to be at particularly risk for a variety of reasons. Not only do they spend large amounts of time laying down on mattresses, pads and floors, they also have frequent hand-to-mouth contact which hastens the introduction of rogue chemicals into their systems. Parents are now beginning to seek safer products for the home, like Naturepedic mattresses that are made without flame retardant chemicals. Still, what about nurseries and preschools? Babies and young children can spend as much as 50 hours every week in preschools or childcare. Recognizing a lack of available scientific data on the preschool environment, a group of researchers from key institutions including the Center for Environmental Research and Children’s Health (CERCH), Batelle Memorial Institute,[…]Read More
So why is there a t-shirt graphic on mattresses? That’s the GOTS logo. Naturepedic mattresses are certified organic and nontoxic to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), the only third-party organic certification recognized by the USDA for organic mattresses. GOTS is challenging to achieve, requiring both onsite inspections and rigorous documentation, but it serves as a respected way of demonstrating organic integrity for consumer products like mattresses. To this end, Naturepedic proudly displays the GOTS logo, with its white shirt in a green circle, on its website, marketing materials and products. You’ll notice the ID number under the GOTS logo – this validates the certification. While the GOTS logo is designed to verify certified organic products, companies will sometimes attempt to misappropriate the logo without doing the work. Sometimes the GOTS logo is used (inappropriately) when a mattress company purchases GOTS-certified material from someone else, generally fabric, but when they aren’t themselves offering certified products. In these cases, the logo[…]Read More