If you are interested in a bit of history about the birth of Nature's Child and Natural Baby Products and Organic Baby Products in Australia, please read on…
It all started in the year 2000. It is normal this century that parents are looking for Natural Baby Products. Back in 1995 when my first son was born I discovered that most baby products were disposable, made from plastic and were chemically based. As I searched for natural baby products for my child, I found it to be a lot of work. Natural Baby Products only existed in markets and small home based enterprises. Internet shopping was new that year, so I found products in the USA and UK but it was expensive to shop internationally at that time. It was my light bulb moment. Australia needed a supplier of Natural Baby Products and I was inspired to create that. Nature’s Child was born in my head in those years and officially born in July 2000. It seemed like a wonderful way to start the new century for Australian babies.
There are hundreds of modern cloth nappies to choose from now. There was one modern cloth nappy in 1995 that I know of, I found it at a local market. I remember the excitement of using it and thinking wow, cloth nappies are really easy to use like this. Things have changed radically in the world of modern cloth nappies and if anything, parents now have too many choices and find it baffling to decide which is the best nappy to use. I hope our website choices narrow that research for you. One of our missions is to search high and low for the very best organic baby brands. We do the research for you and provide it with one stop easy organic baby shopping on line.
The next product I searched for after nappies was cotton breast pads. The only cloth breast pads being sold were polyester which don’t feel very nice on your skin. So we made our own with a WHAM (Work at home mum) business in Victoria who sewed the 100% cotton breast pads in her home. There was no organic cotton in Australia yet that we knew of, we were still looking for organic cotton to make our nappies and breast pads from and eventually had to look overseas to India, one of the few countries that were growing pesticide free cotton.
You will notice by now that we have not mentioned toys or clothing. It is always interesting for me that Nature’s Child was born with very practical, daily needs for parents. We wanted the essential organic baby items to be inexpensive and readily available. Toys and clothing came later!
After many phone calls, searching through magazines and looking through market stalls, I found a few baby products that were natural but organic cotton products did not exist at all. There were a few mail order companies providing Natural Baby Products from 100% cotton. It was in 2000 that we took this a step further and made them from organic cotton.
In July 2000, I started Nature's Child as a small mail order business. We got a great response from our first catalogue which contained only 15 items that I had managed to source, mostly from local, home based suppliers. The response taught us that we were not the only parents looking for Natural Baby Products for their child. The internet was not yet in mainstream use in 2000, many people had home computers and only just connecting to the internet. Our business idea was very niche so we knew that the internet was the best way to reach parents all over Australia. Nature’s Child was born in my spare room, on a computer with some friends building our own site.
Nappies and Diapers was always my main interest. This was a product that I needed to use 8 times a day on my child. I tried disposable nappies for a little while but couldn't stomach the smell and waste that resulted from every day use. I found that research coming out of the USA and UK from the National Association of Diaper Services found that there was a clear environmental advantage to using natural baby products. Despite this, Choice Magazine in Australia reported in 2004 that 89% of Australian parents use disposable nappies either full-time or part-time. In order to manufacture these non-natural baby products, it takes upwards of 82,000 tons of plastic, and 1.3 million tons of wood pulp (or 250,000 trees) to cover the bottoms of 90% of the babies born in the US. This kind of research astounded me and I knew that if we could just let parents know the truth, they would make good decisions.
Parents with children of eczema and allergies were another group besides environmentally aware parents who needed natural baby products as a matter of urgency. There is an instant need for a product when your child has a reaction to food or clothing. There is no time to look into it tomorrow or next week, it is an instant need. This group of parents seemed to be growing from the general use of pesticides in our country. It was urgent that it was easy for these parents to get good products, fast.
Natural baby products are better for the environment in many ways. As a rule, natural baby product services (nappy or diaper services) use biodegradable detergents, not harmful phosphates. The waste water produced from washing these natural baby products is benign, while waste water from manufacturing wood pulp, paper and plastics that disposable nappies are made of contain dioxins, solvents, sludge and heavy metals. While some natural baby product producers employ chlorine to bleach their nappies (many now produced non-bleached nappies), the environmental impact of the paper bleaching for disposable nappies is far worse.
Of course, cotton is not with out its own issues – most farmers employ some sort of herbicide; however organic cotton nappies are now available on the market. At the end of the day you can look at it like this: compare the impact of producing and disposing of, say 8000 paper and plastic nappies over the average nappy wearing period of a child, with that of a few dozen cotton nappies, and come to your own conclusion. Natural baby products in our opinion win hands down (or is that pants down!?).
Baby shopping on the web is fun. Of all baby shops online, we are proud to be Australia's first organic baby shop. Since 2000, our vision has always been to provide the most cost effective, healthiest products for babies possible. We want you to spend less and get more. A savvy eco-shopper mum looking for eco baby products looks for quality, longevity, reusability, biodegradability and chemical free baby products. Our baby shop makes that easy and possible for your family and we are proud to deliver this wonderful service to you.