Açai Harvest In Brazil

Açai Harvest In Brazil

by Paige Donner

Açai berry branch with fruit

Each and every year in Brazil the population awaits its annual açai berry harvest with bated breath. It’s akin to the yearly Beaujolais harvest in France. A time of year filled with celebration and abundance.

The açai berry has been inching its way into the North American mainstream for at least a decade now. Hailed as a little berry packing a powerfully healthy punch, we first…

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With all eyes on Brazil these days, not just for the World Cup, but also for its natural beauty and impressive luxury market, I thought it high time to introduce to our readers the fabulous all-natural beauty care product line called Natura Brasil.

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by Paige Donner

With the world’s eyes on Brazil during these final days of the World Cup soccer matches, I saw that it was high time to shine the spotlight on one of the great organic body care/ beauty product lines on the planet :

Natura Brasil

It’s extraordinary to realize that this product line, certified organic and established in 1969, can be the 5th largest organic personal product care company in the world, yet still be virtually unknown in the North American market.

A Few Facts And Figures


  • Natura Brasil’s total annual revenue – €2.18 billion  (R$ 7.3 billion).
  • #1 personal care product leader in Brasil.
  • 5th largest personal beauty care/ cosmetics line globally (organic).

Natura Brasil today produces body lotions, hand creams, makeup, hair care products, perfumes and personal care product accessories. Most of its range of lines are created around native Brazilian fruits and nuts that also lend health properties to the body. Examples are the celebrated açai, but also the Buriti and the nut we call the Brazil Nut, the castanha, as well as many other native Brazilian plants and fruits.

Founded in 1969 it is fair to say that Natura Brasil is a pioneer in the organic, chemical-free personal body care craze.

The company is founded on a business model of direct sales. Here in the US we are familiar with this through companies such as Avon and Mary Kay Cosmetics. To date, Natura Brasil counts 1.6 million representatives as part of their direct marketing sales force.

In addition to that, the company also counts over 7,000 collaborators in Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Peru, Colombia and in France.

A few of the eco-responsible programs the company had adopted over the decades of its founding are certified carbon neutral enterprise since 2007, partnered with its supplier-producers in the Amazon to co-develop sustainable agricultural methods, use of organic alcohol in its perfumes ( a rarity in the fragrance industry) and sustainable packaging for its products.

natura brasil logo

Highlight Natura EKOS

This product line of Natura Brasil was launched in 2005 in France ; in 2000 in Brazil. It is emblematic of the company’s sustainability ethics and its devotion to organic ingredients and products.

natura brasil castanha ekos

Natura EKOS products act as product-ambassadors for all that is good about native and natural Brazil. The products celebrate the country’s natural richness and communicate about the native Amazonian culture’s deep knowledge regarding their region’s plants and fruits, sharing with us their hidden secrets.

Açai Berry Hand Cream – Natura EKOS Açai

Dreaming of soft, supple hands that smell deliciously berry fruity ? The Natura Ekos Açai Berry hand cream is your go-to hand care product. It hydrates for up to 24hours.

The açai berry oil used in its formula protects your hands from free radicals with its organic anti-oxidant properties. For best results, use it all the way to the tips of your finger nails. 77.6% of the formula’s ingredients are vegetal-origin.

For more information on this and other Natura Brasil EKOS products, visit NaturaBrasil.com.

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Natura Brasil – A Natural Beauty Line Based On The Fruits of Brazil With all eyes on Brazil these days, not just for the World Cup, but also for its natural beauty and impressive luxury market, I thought it high time to introduce to our readers the fabulous all-natural beauty care product line called…

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Visit Sunny Chernobyl - book by Andrew Blackwell

Environmental reporter Andrew Blackwell was inspired to write Visit Sunny Chernobyl after realizing he hadn’t had much personal contact with Eco Disaster Sites. Before writing the book, he did a sort of Eco Disaster World Tour as research.


His book is an exploration in contradictions. Such as how is it that a radioactive site like Chernobyl becomes a defacto wildlife refuge/ nature habitat? Read more in this insightful, humorous and also penetrating look at how our Eco Disaster Sites have greater breadth in their identity than simply locations of extreme environmental degradation.


Sustainable Building Apprenticeship Program For Women

10-Week Women’s Earthbag Dome Building Apprenticeship in Canada 

Lillooet, British Columbia, July 28-October 6, 2012

Kleiwerks International’s Women of the Americas Sustainability Initiative (WASI) is hosting a 10-week, hands-on natural building apprenticeship that brings together a group of women apprentices with an experienced team of earthbag builders and native St’at’imc community members. Their project is to construct a Healing & Cultural Arts Centre near Lillooet, BC. This training immersion provides participants with the opportunity to learn construction while building a dome from start to finish, develop leadership skills through facilitating local groups, work side-by-side with a community that is creating culturally appropriate local solutions, and document the story to share with wider audiences.

Ideal participants are women who have follow-up projects, intend to share what they learn, want to work in the natural building trades and be part of the growing natural building movement. “This apprenticeship is a unique opportunity for participants to delve into earthbag construction while building the envisioned creative cultural community commons with the people of T’it’qet and Lillooet who are engaged in proactively creating a vibrant future by combining traditional St’at’imc culture and values with refined sustainable and ecological solutions,” says Susannah Tedesco, local Program Coordinator.

Today’s building industry uses half of our planet’s resources, yet healthy, time-tested, affordable and soulful construction alternatives exist. These alternatives are based on reclaiming and refining the use of local and recycled materials. Coupled with indigenous knowledge and Permaculture design systems, natural building plays a profound role in creating a way of life that is good for people and the planet. 

Instructors Fox McBride and Chloe Wolsey are teaming up for the first time, combining their extensive and global earthbag dome construction backgrounds. WASI Delegate Christine Jack is a Nlaka’pamux First Nations leader who resides in St’atimc Territory near Lillooet, BC. Guest Instructors, The Mudgirls are a network of natural builders from BC. WASI Coordinator, Susannah Tedesco, is devoted to rural grassroots initiatives that empower communities to create viable local living solutions. 

Women of the Americas Sustainability Initiative (WASI) is an alliance of women leaders who construct, educate, organize, and advocate for strong and empowered communities through ecological design-build practices with the aim of creating a socially and ecologically resilient world.

For details or to apply visit: http://www.kleiwerks.org/wasi-canada-earthbagdome-apprenticeship-2012/. There are 12 seats available. The fee is $3,600, including tuition, meals, lodging and field trips.


dirty hands

Premiere of Harmony at Sundance London Inspired by HRH The Prince of Wales


Filmed at King Pacific Lodge, environmental film debuts at inaugural
Sundance London Film and Music festival

NORTH VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, April 26, 2012 – Inspired by HRH The Prince of Wales (Prince Charles), Harmony, A New Way of Looking at Our World will make its world premiere on April 28th during the inaugural Sundance London Film and Music Festival. Harmony grows out of three decades of work by Prince Charles to find innovative solutions to the global environmental crisis, with the goal of creating a more sustainable, spiritual and harmonious relationship with the planet. The project, which filmed at King Pacific Lodge, a Rosewood Resort, features environmentalists, entrepreneurs, farmers, as well as business and government leaders who are working collectively to restore the balance between man and nature. While at King Pacific Lodge, producers captured spectacular images of the pristine wilderness along British Columbia’s coastline, and learned more about the lodge’s efforts as a leader in modern conservation and sustainable tourism.

As a floating luxury wilderness lodge operating in the heart of the Great Bear Rainforest, King Pacific Lodge works hard to seamlessly blend sustainable philosophies and unparalleled luxury travel experiences, believing that fish counts are as important as thread counts. For more than a decade, the lodge has been at the forefront of creating a new model for sustainable tourism, one that embraces a triple bottom-line business philosophy equally concerned for social equity, environmental conservation, and creating both memorable and benevolent travel experiences for guests. King Pacific Lodge has made great strides in demonstrating this commitment; first by being the initial private tourism operator to forge a working partnership in 2001 with the Gitga’at First Nation in Hartley Bay, thereby recognizing their rights and title to their traditional territory, and by being the first resort in North America to offset its own carbon footprint as well as that of its guests. Additionally, Condé Nast Traveler has rated the lodge as the number one resort in Canada for four consecutive years.

Harmony is produced and directed by Julie Bergman Sender and Stuart Sender, whose work has received Oscar nominations and a Director’s Guild nomination for best documentary feature. To view the trailer for Harmony, A New Way of Looking at Our World, visit www.TheHarmonyMovie.com.

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Environmentalists and Bottom Trawl Industry Develop Innovative Measures To Improve Fishery

Long-time adversaries find common ground to protect and reduce impacts on corals, sponges and deep-sea habitats 

[Press Release]

VANCOUVER — For decades, British Columbia environmentalists have clashed with the groundfish bottom trawl fishing industry, but the two have come together to find common ground, and fragile ocean habitat is the big winner. The two groups have developed innovative measures to conserve corals, sponges and deep-sea habitats. These new management measures have been implemented through

 Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Groundfish Integrated Fisheries Management Plan. Both the environmentalists and the industry representatives agree that these unique measures represent significant progress in the management of this fishery.

The David Suzuki Foundation and Living Oceans Society have been working closely with B.C.’s groundfish bottom trawling industry to develop new measures that are meant to reduce and manage the fishery’s impacts on fragile ocean habitats. The management changes include:

·         defined boundaries for the fishery

·         individual limits on coral and sponge bycatch

·         a procedure to alert skippers if a bycatch in excess of 20 kg of coral or sponge occurs

·         a joint habitat conservation review committee composed of representatives from industry, environmental groups, and Fisheries and Oceans Canada

“It’s the first time anywhere that individual bycatch limits have been used to manage habitat impacts,” said Scott Wallace of the David Suzuki Foundation. “The B.C. groundfish bottom trawl industry should be congratulated for taking on this new level of individual accountability.”

Both sides are quick to point out the important achievement of the formation of a long-term collaborative relationship 

through a formal habitat conservation committee. This will allow both sides to work together to address habitat concerns going into the future and ensure that the measures are achieving the expected results.

“The development of the habitat committee is a major step forward by itself,” said John Driscoll of Living Oceans Society. “When you view it alongside all of the other changes that are being put into place as a result of this effort, it’s clear that this fishery is changing in some very real and exciting ways.”

For the industry, the economic rationale is clear: “Our markets are increasingly demanding evidence that fisheries are well managed, employ sustainable practices and address ecosystem impacts,” said Brian Mose, a fifth generation fisherman and member of the Canadian Groundfish Research and Conservation Society. “We know that in order to maintain and expand market opportunities, we need to provide assurances to environmental organizations, retailers, and consumers that we are serious about managing and reducing our impacts on ocean ecosystems.”

“It is important to address these habitat conservation issues, because we recognize that our industry’s future is reliant on a healthy ecosystem,” said Bruce Turris of the Canadian Groundfish Research and Conservation Society. “Our partnership with the environmental organizations has allowed us to come up with an innovative solution that works for our industry and conservationists.”

For the environmental groups, the conservation improvements are significant. Deep sea corals form forests far b

elow the surface of Canada’s Pacific Ocean, supplying places for juvenile fish to hide from predators and for many organisms to feed. British Columbia environmental groups have long singled out the bottom trawl fishery for its impacts on these marine habitats. Rather than publicly disputing the criticism, industry opened up lines of communication with the environmental groups that continued for more than three years, leading to this precedent setting effort to work together to change the fishery for the better.

Both industry and the conservation organizations are grateful for the support provided by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Pacific Region staff who were instrumental in providing data analysis and showing management leadership.

Policy Context

Fisheries and Oceans Canada Sensitive Benthic Area Policy available at:


Pacific Region Cold-Water Coral and Sponge Conservation Strategy available at:


Photo credit: Living Oceans Society


March 31st 8:30 pm - The Lights Go Off!

Earth Hour Global Slideshow - Click HERE

More than 5,200 cities and towns in 135 countries worldwide switched off their lights for Earth Hour last year alone, sending a powerful message for action on climate change. It also ushered in a new era with members going Beyond the Hour to commit to lasting action for the planet. Without a doubt, it’s shown how great things can be achieved when people come together for a common cause.

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