Friday, July 17, 2015

Celebrating 20 Years in Business

20 years ago MoonMaid Botanicals was born.  I travelled around California...and then across country marketing my wares.  It was easy to engage buyers and managers because I have always been extremely passionate about herbs and women's health.  I want women to know that menopause is a life transition, not a sickness, not a dis-ease.  It is fun to talk about herbs, lifestyle and menopause.

To celebrate - I am taking MoonMaid back on the road this Fall.  There is social networking, there are cold calls but there is nothing like talking to a person face to face, handing them a product and information.  Nothing at all.  Of course, there is the footwork of a follow-up calls, more engagement, and I really like all of that.  If my products are already represented in a store - I will be spending time with the staff and chatting with customers.

Of course, one does not just walk into Whole Foods and get time with staff or time on the floor.  One cannot just drop off products - and get anywhere.  There is a corporate ladder that must be climbed one step at a time.  Hence, I intend to focus on privately owned stores, owned by a real person, or small chain community focused stores or Co-ops.  It is where I got my start. I am heading back to the roots of how I started my business, just after I have celebrated my 60th birthday.  I have come to realize that rather then children, I birthed MoonMaid and she is quite a beautiful creation at 20 years strong.  An excellent reason for a celebration.

To raise money for this 5 week journey - I have created a product bundle I am calling my TravelKit.  It includes all of the items I will be taking with me; ProMeno, Vital "V", Nettles, BugOff, BathBliss Soap and my new face serum (that is still in development), a bundle valued @ over $150 and on sale for $75.00.   All sales will be used for my travel fund!!  I most certainly appreciate the support.  It's a big trip for me, for MoonMaid and for Nissan, my travelling companion.  We are looking forward to seeing new places, new roads, and making new friends. We will be staying in Air B and B's, eating light, and enjoying as much of this wide wild USA as possible.  If you are on the I40 route and have suggestions of places to see - please let me know.

Additionally I am featured in a book - What do Raw Fooders Eat.  Yes....I eat raw a lot.  Not totally but I am fond of veggies, juices, fermented foods and things like that.  Check the book out here.  I think you will find it very valuable.

                                                    Cynthia @ MoonMaid Botanicals

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Hitting the road

I feel a little restless.   I have a big birthday this year.  I have entered menopause - something I have been talking to women about for 20 years.  How herbs can be so helpful.  How simple our menopause should be, how we have to protect our environment that grows the plants that are our medicine, how delicate the balance is.  Sometimes I can really get on a "bandwagon" because I hear the same stories over and over again.  How women have been "troubled" (to be kind) in trying to treat the symptoms of menopause with drugs.

When I first started sharing my products, that is "marketing" my products to stores - you could walk in, find the happy department manager, leave them some products and info and follow up later.  No more. My my how things have changed in 20 years.  Now - it is sometimes, dare I say, "forbidden" to market directly to a floor manager.  Or, the chain of command is so long - it is an act of God to get a spot on the shelf.  The popularity of "local" has made some difference - even in large chains like Whole Foods.  For me - though I sure would not say "no" to a large market - I have had much more success with small, local, privately owned natural food stores.  And, I love doing one on one consultations, demo's in stores and community events.

As I mentioned, I have been in business 20 years!  Wow - how time has flown.  In celebration I have decided to go back to the roots of what I do and hit the road.  I may be in your area!! Here is a short list of some of the markets, co-ops and other stores I will stop by.
La Montanita Co-op, Santa Fe, NM
Food for a Healthier Life in Woodward, Ok
WinterSun in Flagstaff, AZ
Five Flavor Herbs in Oakland, CA
Barbara Hoffman @ Better Health Naturaly in Corona del Mar, CA
Dale Figtree in Santa Barbara, CA
Staff of Life in Santa Cruz, CA
Restoration Health in Redding, CA
Ashland Food Cooperative, Ashland OR

If you are on this Interstate 40 corridor or the California to Oregon route and would like to see me and MoonMaid - just let me know. Leaving on August, 28, 2015.

Monday, July 6, 2015

In Memory of Burt Shavitz

Burt's Bees died today.  No...really.  The company, as it exists is the complete opposite of anything Burt Shavitz would have endorsed.  So I feel like, it has come to rest.  The name is out there, but Burt is gone.  He was the only thing that gave the company the tiniest little bit of "natural."  At last he won't be there to talk about his bees and amaze folks by approaching hives completely unprotected.

The fact is, I don't like Burt's Bees, the product line.  It's owned by Clorox, and to me, it is absolutely everything about what can go wrong when ethics are set aside and greed takes hold. This is not a "clean" product though it touts itself as such.  It has some "natural" ingredients, but it is not at all, in my mind, what it started out to be.  I had thought it was Mr. Burt who sold out to "bit pharma" and it just so happens, I had the story all wrong.

It turns out that Burt helped Roxanne Quimby, a girl he picked up hitchhiking, a single mom on the road.  She had some recipes, he had wax and a bunch of business sense.  The business became a "machine" and he knew they needed people and space. They grew, and then as Burt was getting a bit older, Roxanne bought him out, for $130K.........and then sold it for millions.  And then Clorox bought it.  Seems Clorox knew what they had in Burt - the "brand" of the product.  They had him doing appearances and speaking gigs - so he lived a comfortable life.  As I understand it - he just preferred to be on his land with his dogs.

To me - this is an example of an entrepreneur gone haywire.  I have no issue with making money.  I do have issue with taking "natural" and tweaking that definition so much that you can market a product with very little "natural" about it, that is produced in mass by a company that has some questionable ethics, to say the least.  This product, that started out as small batch, handcrafted, made by locals with local ingredients.  It is a sad sad story......Cynthia @ MoonMaid Botanicals