Stephane Lacoutiere, global marketing director of Cargill Beauty, said the company had been receiving more interest from its customers who want to develop more natural-based and sustainable formulations.
“Consumers are looking for products that are… from natural origins with good sustainability stories and have positive impact on the planet and people. That is why we have a portfolio only based on natural products. It is really fitting the consumer and customer demands,” he said.
Chellan Huang, marketing manager of Cargill Beauty APAC, added that Cargill’s product portfolio could fill the gap in the Asian market that is hungry for more natural products.
“In Asia today, there is demand for low viscosity systems for facial masks or serums. It is very popular in North Asia, even the whole of Asia. Our products are very much fitted for these applications.”
Promise of sustainable beauty
As such, the company believes its sustainability programmes are important and meaningful for consumers.
The Red Seaweed Promise is a sustainability programme which addresses sustainability challenges of harvesting and cultivation of red seaweed.
“We've been working for decades with carrageenan and red seaweed so we have done a lot of actions. Now we are officially launching a promise with clear goals and clear targets,” said Lacoutiere.
The aim of the Red Seaweed promise is to achieve 60% of sustainable seaweed supply by 2025.
Red seaweed is harvested from tropical areas all over the world, including the Philippines.
Lacoutiere explained that red seaweed harvesting involved a lot of challenges and the firm helped by providing the necessary tools and resources to improve the cultivation process for its producers.
“They face a lot of challenges and we are committed to improving the lives of the seaweed producers and the communities to secure a long-term supply chain,” said Lacoutiere.
The programme has four main targets: empowering seaweed producers, improving production and harvesting practices, strengthening partnerships and offering community support.
The Red Seaweed Promise is particularly meaningful in Asia because carrageenan has great potential in the region.
“Carrageenan has a very special sensory, It is very fresh compared to mainstream products. With a natural concept and special sensory, we see a lot of potential in Asia,” said Chellan Huang.
Another ingredient that Cargill works closely with is waxy corn.
“It brings nice creamy textures and velvety sensory thanks to starch based on waxy corn,” said Lacoutiere.
According to Lacoutiere, the firm has already achieved 100% sustainability and is now getting a third-party to evaluate its approach.
Spreading sustainability in Asia
The company hopes to continue spreading the message in the Asia Pacific region, which is why it co-sponsor the Personal Care and Homecare Ingredients 2019 (PCHi 2019) Sustainability Forum.
“We were very happy to co-sponsor and do something in China to spread the sustainability message. The reason why we decided to co-sponsor is because we hope we can contribute to the industry by talking about sustainability,” said Huang.
She added that the values of sustainability resonated strongly in China.
“In Chinese culture, there is a long history of using traditional herbal ingredients. People believe in botanical, herbal and natural ingredients. We believe it’s very good to talk about nature and sustainability because it fits well with the Chinese culture and the current trends.”