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Raw Living was founded in order to make hard to find health foods more accessible. As well as foods, we supply lifestyle products such as organic bedding and eco kitchen supplies. We also have a wide range of organic vegan natural beauty and skincare products. Our customers are highly discerning individuals who want the best for themselves and the planet.
Sustainability has always been a central ethos of the business. We only work with suppliers who have ethical policies in place, regarding how the foods are farmed, production methods, how the workers are treated, and how they are packaged. We have a podcast series where we interview suppliers, so our customers can learn for themselves the dedication and commitment of these businesses, and we also have a Further Info tab on every product which details the company’s ethos.
Our own brand range is organically certified wherever possible. We develop close relationships with our suppliers so we know that workers are treated fairly, for example cacao is one of our best-selling products. We work with a farming co-operative in Peru who are socially and rurally responsible and have been shown to make a positive impact on improving the quality of life for farmers and their families. We also use this cacao for making our own brand raw chocolate bars, which are packaged in cardboard and biodegradable plastic.
When we send out parcels, we recycle packaging wherever possible. We invested in a cardboard shredder, so we can shred old boxes and use that as packing. If we have to use extra packaging, we use compostable packing peanuts. Even the tape that we use to seal boxes is biodegradable. Our own brand packaging is printed with eco-friendly inks. Our main courier is DPD, who is the UK’s most sustainable delivery company and many of their delivery vans are electric. Our electricity supplier is Ecotricity, the UK's greenest energy company.
We are ethically awarded by The Ethical Company Organisation since 2011. We are signed up to the Living Wage scheme since it launched in 2012. We have been organically certified with OFG since 2012. In 2021, we won Best Ethical Health Food Brand in the Southern Enterprise Awards.
We believe that going vegan alone is one of the best things a person can do for the environment, and so as an entirely vegan business we are contributing to that change.
We also believe the damage to the environment done by conventional farming is huge, and so everything we sell is organic (although not all of it is certified because we work with many small producers).
We think personal responsibility for health is becoming increasingly important, and we are proud to serve people with products that can help them to do that better. People are an intrinsic environmental factor, and you cannot separate out the health of the community from the health of their environment.
We will continue supporting international small producers, for example Bee Baltic is a Lithuanian company following in generational methods of bee-keeping to protect the bees and the local environment. We sell their honey, and also their bee products such as beeswax wraps as a replacement for plastic wrap, and beeswax candles which are more environmental than petroleum-based candles.
Our courier DPD is working on converting their entire fleet to electric vehicles. Their aim is to be the greenest delivery company on the planet! As virtually all our orders are online, this partnership is very important to us.
We continue to monitor packaging options and always upgrade to the most eco-responsible options available. As much as we don’t like plastic, it still has the best chance of being disposed correctly or being recycled. It is also the most practical option when it comes to superfoods, supplements and food products. We use the thinnest plastic that is fit for purpose, and our pouches do not have any metallic inner lining, in order to make recycling possible.
Most crucially,all the above options need some specific conditions for them to compost or degrade and also need to be disposed of correctly. If they don’t meet any of these criteria, the materials would end up in landfill and sit there for a very long time. The main point is that some packaging companies have been investing and researching in more eco friendly packaging solutions for a long time and while they can offer various options, without the correct infrastructure in place for the correct disposal of the materials (most consumers do not know how the materials can be disposed of, and there are no clear guidelines from local authorities yet on how to dispose of them correctly), having a eco friendly option is meaningless.
The Ethical Company Award is given to companies that meet the highest standards of ethical practices across the three main areas of environment, animals and people. The Award is given by The Good Shopping Guide, an independent research and accreditation company with 20 years’ experience as a trusted source of impartial and independent information.We have been recognised as an Ethical company since 2011.
We are also SALSA certified. SALSA is a robust and effective food safety certification scheme which is appropriate for smaller food producers and suppliers. Approved suppliers must demonstrate that they operate to standards that are recognised and accepted across the industry and exceed the minimum standards expected by governmental bodies. SALSA approval is only granted to suppliers who are able to demonstrate to an auditor that they are able to produce and supply safe and legal food and are committed to continually meeting the requirements of the SALSA standard.