Vitamin Retailer February 2014 : Page 35

2014 Company Profiles: A Focus on Quality Natural Vitality 8500 Shoal Creek Blvd., Building 4, #208 Austin, TX 78757 Phone: (800) 446-7462 • Fax: (818) 847-1056 Email: Websites:;; A Commitment to Quality Creates Satisfied, Repeat Purchasers By Ken Whitman, President, Natural Vitality atural Vitality was founded in 1995 by Peter Gillham to market his formulation Natural Calm®. In 2007, Ken Whitman, Susan Whitman and Justin Farmer purchased the com-pany from Gillham and created the bal-ance of the Natural Vitality line. The company’s efforts centered on premium foundational nutrition, as well as innovative delivery systems. Bio-availability is essential for supplements, and Natural Vitality felt that water-solu-ble powder and liquids were the future because they were already broken down for assimilation. The company doesn’t believe that more is automatically better. So, rather than produce numerous SKUs, it pro-duced only what it felt is a valid and practical contribution toward simplifying and improving nutrition. While some new valid discoveries are being made, there are nutritional funda-mentals that remain constant. Some of these can easily become obscured by fads. It is important to remember that the human body is a system, not simply a collection of isolated parts. We may intervene where needed, due to nutri-tional deficiencies, but we must also maintain an attitude of humility when dealing with the brilliance and complex-ity that is nature’s system. In addition, Natural Vitality believes that you can’t be fully healthy in a toxic environment, and that means a respon-sibility to and for each other and for our planet. To this end, it began publishing its free award-winning magazine, Organic Connections , and instituted its Natural Revitalization environmental action initiative, in which the company funds and works with nonprofits geared toward an agricultural system based on nutrient quality, rather than quantity. N ness solution. Economies of scale will take you so far. Finding cheaper ingre-dient sources, specifying less costly ingredients and finding inexpensive labor is the tack often chosen in the corporate world. These practices have sent jobs to cheaper, offshore labor pools and created a supply chain stretching to the cheapest international suppliers. This can compromise the quality, integrity and sustainability of a product without the consumer being aware of it. Instead of raising the retail price, simply provide less. Faced with escalating costs, Natural Vitality has chosen to resolve these business conundrums by refusing to compromise product quality. It has cho-sen quite a number of times to improve product quality at it own expense. Examples are the company’s inclusion of organic rather than “conventional” fruits and vegetables, and the use of organic flavors, organic stevia and organic agave when the nonorganic varieties were less costly. Stand for Something When the choice is price versus efficacy, Natural Vitality goes with efficacy. A branded selenium was superior in form and in supporting science, so the com-pany chose it despite the added expense. It believed certain forms of calcium were more bioavailable and included these in its products even though many manufacturers use the cheapest and least absorbable form. Natural Vitality has taken a firm non-GMO (genetically modified organism) stance and made sure that the citric acid it uses is not derived from corn, but from non-GMO sugar beets. The company’s Natural Calm has been certi-fied non-GMO by the Non-GMO Project, as have its Plant-Sourced Minerals. We all have the expectation that what’s on the label is in the product. All supplement manufacturers are expected to follow good manufacturing practices (GMPs) that incorporate checks along the way and lab testing for quality assurance. The supplement industry has an excellent record in this regard. Quality, however, isn’t all about pro-cedures and numbers. It’s in the ingredi-ents, in the formulation, and in the design and usability of the product. The best test of that is consumer satisfac-tion. Anybody can bring a product to market, but the best reviews are the comments of buyers and their repeat purchases. To this end, Natural Vitality is proud that Natural Calm has been the best-selling magnesium supplement in the natural channel for eight years running. In addition, its multis—Organic Life Vita-mins® and Kids Natural Calm® Multi— are top sellers in the liquid format. Main Products Natural Calm Organic Life Vitamins Kids Natural Calm Multi Osteo Calm® (bone health) Natural Calm® Plus Calcium Energy28™ (whole-food energy shot) Plant-Sourced Minerals Balanced CalMag It’s Not All About the Money In business, we face decisions every day that can impact the bottom line. The consumer needs to be able to afford a product. Raw ingredient suppliers, man-ufacturers, distributors, brokers and retailers need to make a profit (along with shippers, printers, packagers and others). Cutting costs is the usual busi-FEBRUARY 2014 ■ WWW.VITAMINRETAILER.COM Celebrating 20 Years of Excellence 1994-2014 VITAMIN RETAILER 35

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