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A Passion for Natural

By: Karen A. Newman
Posted: August 29, 2008, from the February 2007 issue of GCI Magazine.
Hain Celestial’s Andy Jacobson

Working in the family business was the seed that grew into a career in the natural product industry for Hain Celestial’s Andrew Jacobson.

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In his view, the natural food industry led the way in developing enforceable organic standards. As importantly, food capitalized on the consumers who read labels and truly cared what they put in their body. “The personal care side is now starting to experience label-readers trying to define ingredient standards, and we are capitalizing on the consumer who cares what goes on their body,” said Jacobson. “Like food, personal care products draw ingredients from nature, making products that are efficacious and safe for the new consumer.”

Jacobson made the switch from food to personal care at Hain, and one might assume that his work on the food side informs his current work on personal care. Yet, from his perspective, he was familiar with the personal care category from his family’s stores and from eight years spent working for a distributor.

“I’ve sold Jason for a lot of years,” he said. “I don’t necessarily know if it is work in food or work in an industry (that informs his efforts today). A lot of food products were created not just out of a good idea, but as a mirror of products with ingredients that are different than those we would find acceptable within our industry and lifestyle.”

He pointed out that there are a lot of ingredients in food that act only as fillers or colors. “Our thing is we try to use ingredients that are functional and good for you and really need to be in the product for the product. That’s something that we’ve done in food; that we’re doing in personal care today,” said Jacobson.

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