Little Soap Company was conceived in 2008 with genuine provenance from hand-making on the kitchen table and selling in subzero degrees at local farmers markets to getting it to the supermarket shelf, at an affordable price. Little Soap Company really has been a rags to riches tale having brought the first RSPO Sustainable, Organic soap to the supermarket a decade ago and remaining there ever since. With various ranges for differing audiences accounts include Waitrose, Boots, Booths, Sainsbury, Ocado, Wholefoods, Tesco and Asda stores as well as Garden Centres such as Dobbies and online retailers including Ocado, Fetch and Amazon. Little Soap Company entered the sector, brightened the shelves, created and drove consumer demand for organic and natural soap and helped turn it around, bringing an entirely new audience to purchase natural bar soap. Now one of the fastest growing companies in the toiletries sector and with copious personal and products awards under her belt including making the 2019 Lloyds Bank/Telegraph “Top 50 Most Ambitious Business Leaders” List and shortlisted to the final 5 in the Amazon Small Business Awards (result end of Nov 19). The products follow suit with accolades of their own including awards from Beauty Bible, Free From Skincare Awards, Mama & Baby Beauty Awards, Green Parent, The Grocer and Psychologies Magazine Eco Awards.
Little Soap Company
Our commitment on the movement
We are (and have been for the past 11 years – way before it was common knowledge) very vocal about the fact we use RSPO sustainable palm as we passionately believe in the need to NOT boycott palm oil. It’s such a complex issue and not one that can be replied to in a single sentence, tweet or post… the big issue is actually deforestation and the lack of local alternatives. Not palm per se. If there was no palm, there would STILL be deforestation. And on a far larger scale sadly as palm is a faster yield that needs less space. The locals can’t just pack up and put down their tools – they need an income. We absolutely welcome the debate and to me, soap is a great vehicle to help educate around what is a really murky issue. It would be far easier for us not to use palm at all but for the sake of the rains forests I am choosing to.
"We are so proud to use RSPO sustainable palm in some recipes though as we passionately believe in the need to NOT boycott palm oil."Emma Heathcote-James, Founder, MD
A message from Little Soap Company about our use of palm oil
We have had a lot of interest in our use of palm on social media after our invite to Ethical Hour and other media broadcasts so wanted to write a quick update on here to keep all information in one place…
We are so proud to use RSPO sustainable palm in some recipes though as we passionately believe in the need to NOT boycott palm oil.
It’s such a complex issue and not one that can be replied to in a single sentence or social media post… the big issue is deforestation and lack of local alternatives. Not palm. If there was no palm, there would STILL be deforestation. And on a far larger scale sadly as palm is a faster yield that needs less space. The locals can’t just pack up and put down their tools – they need an income. We absolutely welcome the debate and soap has become a vehicle in which we are able to educate about the need for sustainable palm and that a blanket boycott of all palm would be even more devastating.
We have a policy to leave all the threads up on Insta and Facebook because we want people to be able to hear from all sides in this matter and make their own informed choice…. we hope in each thread that you see there will be information to help inform you to be able to make your own choice. We work closely with many conservation trusts and charities who all back the need for sustainable palm….
Also to note Chester is a sustainable palm town with many others thankfully following suit…. boycotting isn’t the answer. Making an informed decision not to buy anything *other* than palm is the key message from those working with orang’s out there.
When I first created Little Soap Company back in 2008 I was only too aware of the controversy over the use of palm oil in a wide range of consumer products. Because of this, and my genuine passion about and commitment to the environment I heavily researched the topic and from day one have carefully sourced all our oils from sustainable organic plantations and in the case of palm oil from accredited organic, RSPO-certified sustainable plantations. Yes this has made our soap more expensive but also allowed me to produce the most wholesome, rich and lathery organic, natural soap I believe is possible.
The whole sustainability issue is vast and for that reason we have teamed up with our pals at the Sumatran Orangutan Society (SOS) to explain why and how we’re playing our part in breaking the link between palm oil and the destruction of orangutan habitat.
Why we don’t boycott palm oil
If we all switched to using a different type of vegetable oil, this could result in two unintended consequences:
- There would be a big rise in demand for land to grow other vegetable oil crops to replace the demand for palm oil – all agriculture has a footprint and this could lead to even more precious forests being lost;
- The price of palm oil could drop, actually increasing demand in other areas of the world such as India and China, and for uses such as biofuels.
We do not believe that boycotting palm oil is the answer – instead, we want to play our part in transforming the industry. We are a small company but we want to add our voice to the growing call for palm oil companies to produce responsible palm oil, and stop clearing forests. Many companies around the world have made zero-deforestation commitments, and we are reaching a tipping point where demand for responsible palm oil will drive big changes in the way the oil is produced.
Little Soap Company has pledged to use only organic, certified sustainable palm oil in our products, which means that the palm oil has been produced without harming the rainforests that orangutans and so many other species depend on for their survival.
We recognise that the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), the body that oversees certified sustainable palm oil, is not perfect. The Sumatran Orangutan Society and others are working hard to make it as strong a standard as possible, and by supporting SOS, and insisting that our suppliers source palm oil only from traceable plantations that have not contributed to deforestation, we can be confident that our business and our customers are helping to keep forests standing and orangutans and other wildlife safe.
Sign up, switch to sustainable palm oil and join us in showing the positive impact on the ground and making sustainable palm oil a reality!
Are you committed? Join the Sustainable Palm Oil Choice.