Marcus Blackmore, the head of Australia’s leading natural health business, Blackmore’s Australia, recently accredited the new rise in demand for naturally nutritious foods to the increased confusion in labelling of food products.
Over the past one year, Blackmore’s stock has seen a tremendous growth from $32 a share to being the first Australian company to break the price benchmark at a price of $200/share. At the beginning of December 2015, the company opened a new flagship store, whose opening at Westfield Bondi Junction was graced by Marcus Blackmore, CEO Christine Holgate and Australia and New Zealand managing director David Fenlon. Blackmore said labels such as ‘reduced salt and fat’ or ‘diet’ are making consumers suspicious. As a result, he added that what was being witnessed was a strong shift towards natural and organic foods.
Below is the speech he gave during the ribbon cutting ceremony of his first Australian store.
He said good things come in sets of three which he further elaborated the recent achievements his company had gained in the past couple of days. Firstly, Blackmore’s CEO Christine Holgate had been announced as the leading CEO in Australia by Executive of the year Awards, Secondly, Blackmore’s had won the title of National Exporter of the Year and third, the company was then now launching a new store.
Terming the opening as déjà vu, Blackmore continued to narrate how before his birth, in 1938, his father owned a naturopathic health store for foods in Brisbane. Joking about how it would have been a strange occurrence for such a store to exist back then, he said the opening of the new store was essentially a recreation of the same concept.
He added that it wasn’t about the store but what was most important was the essential naturopathic philosophy the store symbolized. In a space where the complexity of nutritional medicine as well as natural food and health, the store was meant to provide clarity in the complexity as well as alleviate the confusion in the matter. This will be done via the modalities applied by other diagnostic tools as well as naturopaths who will be in the store.
Blackmore also expressed his pride in the flagship store and added that the company had about 8 store located in Asia, and he hoped there would be a mutual sharing of learning between the stores and the new one.
Blackmore father had warned against the consumption of refined carbohydrates and white sugar, in relation to the obesity problem facing the country, but no one had listened. However, with the current obesity issue -Blackmore recounts- the message is being taken more seriously. He adds that he is fascinated by the ever popping up of whole food restaurants, which he attributes to consumers having an affinity to whole foods.
On another note, he says today’s consumers get suspicious when they come across foods with labelling such as ‘reduced salts’, ’diet’ or ’diet’. They get overly suspicious especially when they come across products that are packaged in cans and bottles; having chemical ingredients that they find difficult to pronounce.
As a result, he says that consumers are now robustly moving towards GMO free, Natural and organic foods. He adds that consumers do not want any interference of the natural food supply. As far gluten is concerned, he says everything has become gluten free, even restaurants have gluten free foods as a result of consumer demands.
“Our time has come.” Says Blackmore adding that his father’s fundamental philosophical values instilled in the inception of Blackmore’s and the current people have maintained them to this very day.
At the flagship store, customers will be able to get information based on realistic evidence as well as book short private consultations from professional naturopaths. The store will also facilitate yoga classes, as well as educational health seminars and workshops on a variety