Show #216 – Weleda – Planet Stewardship through Business with Annette Piperidis

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And on this week’s show!

Every once in a while, a brand comes along that sets the standard for many to follow. One of those companies is indeed Weleda, founded by Rudolph Steiner 100 years ago next year, on the biodynamic principles he was defining at the time before being condemned by the Nazis – by Hitler himself – for his progressive ideas of oneness. From those first preparations, one of which is still famous today, cult product Skin Food, has grown into one of the biggest ethical, sustainable companies in the world. I am thrilled to have Annette Piperidis, International Strategic Sourcing Coordinator at Weleda global with us on the show, to take us under the hood of the brand and show us how they maintain high standards despite their scale. Annette is responsible for ensuring that all raw materials meet the company’s high standards such as the highest standard of them all, the UEBT. Enjoy the show!

The questions I asked Annette:

    1. How did you come to be passionate about the plant world as a child/young adult? 
    2. And of that interest, how did you decide what the best way to grow plants was (ie your focus on biodiversity/biodynamics vs conventional/industrial)? And you joined Weleda – a natural progression it seems… Just a little chat about that. 
    3. Now, let’s talk about soil. All of my favourite farmers talk about how they are soil farmers, rather than veggie farmers, or beef farmers… It’s all about the soil, so let’s dive into a bit about the magic of soil. 
    4. There are a few key forms of agriculture that are regenerative giving more back than they take, and biodynamics is certainly one of the stars of the show – can you talk us through a bit of a 101 for anyone who’s never quite understood what sets it apart from the more generic understanding of ‘organic’? 
    5. I love Allan Savory’s teachings on holistic management, considering all parts contributing to the health of the ‘whole’ – and this is so important to biodynamics success, seeing the garden as an organism. A ‘whole’ to which many parts contribute, yes? 
    6. We are in a watershed moment in time now with species extinction: How vital is it to turn this ship around, that farming methods chance? What are some of the things we can all do to make that happen? 
    7. Can you share some of the magic of some of the most used plants in the production of Weleda’s range? 
    8. How do we retain the wild power and habits of the plants, and the biodiversity, when producing huge quantities of products at the end of the line? 
    9. How do you deal with the growth of Weleda in the market place and nature needing to take her time? 
    10. And for our listeners: What are a couple of things we can all empower ourselves to do in the month ahead, that would mean we step up and play a role in returning our planet to health (maybe a good spot to weave in compost / growing wild plants in our gardens/on balconies)?

Other helpful links:

Know more about Weleda and their amazing products: https://www.weleda.com.au/

Find or tag them on Instagram @weledaaustralia and Facebook

This week’s Show Sponsor

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Enjoy the show and thanks again for taking the time to rate and review the show on your app – it’s like tipping the bartender and it means the world.

Low Tox. Happy us. Happy planet

 

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