How Farm-to-Table is Moving Beyond the Food Industry
The restaurant industry has long been familiar with the idea of farm-to-table, helping producers promote their work and boosting transparency between farmers and your plate. Now the fashion, beauty and homeware industries are catching up to the concept.
These brands to trust work closely with the farmers and producers of their raw materials. They know exactly how their products were made so you can shop with confidence.
South African luxury accessories brand Okapi prides itself on how close it is to its manufacturing team.
Rather than relying on faceless factories, the brand employs Ostrich farming families from the South African town of Oudtshoorn, works with a co-operatively run tannery, and taps conservationists, veterinarians and game-rangers to help develop its products.
Its range of colourful ostrich leather bags, purses and accessories all have hardware designed and made by the brand’s in-house artisanal metal workers, too.
Seascape Island Apothecary
The island of Jersey, sat between the UK and France, serves as the HQ, home and store cupboard for cosmetics brand Seascape Island Apothecary.
Local lavender farms, island beekeepers and British bottlemakers are all employed by the company, which also distributes part of its profits to its suppliers.
The brand focusses on herbal blends, with bergamot, eucalyptus and geranium all featuring heavily in its library of hand creams, oils, salt scrubs and bath soaks.
Manhattan-based designer Gabriela Hearst found a way to combine her past with her future when she launched her eponymous fashion label in 2015 and simultaneously took over her father’s ranch in her home country of Uruguay.
This combination of high fashion and farming has made for an easily traceable, high-quality source for her materials. Her dedication to both endeavours has paid off: her line of fluid, feminine dresses and separates is now stocked at Net-a-Porter and Bergdorf’s and has been spotted on Emma Watson.
Aura-Soma Pegasus Parfum
Brit perfumiers Aura-Soma Pegasus Parfum say the perfume world has become “dominated with perfumes made using synthetic chemicals, fixatives and solvents”: its solution is to create its own award-winning blends using only natural and organic essential oils extracted from plants and flowers.
Their alcohol, which is used as the fragrance carrier, is certified organic, and plant materials are sourced from its own Shire Farm in the Lincolnshire Wolds, one of UK’s largest biodynamic farms.
British firm Penrose Products creates its luxury bedding using a range of natural fibres, including alpaca and sheep wool from British farms.
The family-run business is passionate about hand-making all of its products in a Nottinghamshire workshop . “With many parts of the UK manufacturing industry investing in automation, the number of entry-level jobs has decreased and traditional hand crafted methods of manufacturing are becoming a rarity,” the firm says.
Customers feel the benefit from made-to-order, pillowy-soft duvets and cushions that can be refreshed on demand by the company.
If you enjoyed this, you might like to read Brands That Care: Protecting the Planet or Global Artisans: Craftsmanship From Around the World.