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The Buzz on Burt's Bees

The Buzz on Burt's Bees

Late last year, Clorox bought Burt's Bees, the natural-cosmetics company known for beeswax-based lotions, soaps, shampoos and other body care products. The selling price was nearly $1 billion, a high figure for a brand known for its homey, back-to-basics packaging and philosophy. (And yes, that's Burt himself in this photo.) But many of Burt's green-minded customers weren't thrilled that profits will now pour into a corporation known for making bleach, a not-so-ecological product.

This might give them some hope. Burt's Bees is trying to regulate the use of words like "natural" and "eco-friendly." According to the New York Times:

Burt’s Bees has also led a group of companies that have teamed up with the Natural Products Association to create a standard for natural personal care products, complete with stickers to label items that make the cut. To qualify, brands must create products that are at least 95 percent natural and contain no ingredients known to be harmful. The stickers will make their debut in April.

Consumers "walk down the aisle in the grocery stores’ health and beauty area, and they’re confronted with ‘natural’ at every turn,' says Daniel Fabricant, vice president for scientific and regulatory affairs at the association. 'We just don’t want to see the term misused any longer."

Even though I'm still a bit disappointed by the sale of Burt's Bees to Clorox, it's nice to see the brand leading this endeavor. The more transparent labeling can be, the better.


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