Industry News & Updates

From The Ground Up

John Roulac's Quiet Revolution

By Brent Young

John Roulac At His Hemp Farm

Odds are John Roulac has been a part of your life and you never knew it. He made composting cool in the nineties. He founded Nutiva, the world’s leading organic superfoods brand, which helped popularize hemp, chia seeds and virgin coconut oil, too. Then there was his non-profit GMOinside, which changed the way large food brands think about genetically modified ingredients. GMOinside brought about changes at Hershey’s, Campbell’s, and General Mills. In 2013, John and Nutiva were the first food brand to spread the message of regenerative ag and its role in reversing climate change. That work led to General Mills recently announcing plans to utilize regenerative farming practices for 1MM acres of farm land. His mission-driven businesses have impacted our environment and our health.

But John was also on the front lines of the hemp industry—long before plant-based extracts were the popular wellness supplement they are today.

In 2001, John sued the U.S. DEA to keep hemp foods legal. He saw hemp not only as a way to support organic agriculture but as a way to preserve farming traditions that date back hundreds of years.

RE Botanicals, his latest venture, is the culmination of all these previous efforts. It is the first U.S.-grown, USDA certified-organic hemp brand. Mission-driven, the company donates 1% of sales to advance regenerative agriculture. Regenerative farming, like composting or superfoods before, is a term you’ll be hearing more about in the coming years. Its methods are focused on crop rotations, soil health, and how to farm in ways that improve the health of the land, reduce the need for agricultural chemicals and produce consistently clean products. Where industrial farming habits have historically battered land and caused environmental damage, regenerative farming aims to strengthen our planet. It represents a return to a time when land was respected and cared for.

Traditional values extend to the processing of RE Botanicals’ products. The company uses the centuries old alcohol extraction method. They then take a modern spin by blending with organic MCT coconut oil for their carrier oil. This improves absorption and shelf life without introducing any unwanted chemicals or byproducts. It’s one of the reasons why RE Botanicals emerged as the first national hemp brand to be certified organic by the USDA for U.S.-grown hemp.

So how does a business leader make his way to your garden, your pantry, and your medicine cabinet without you ever knowing his name?

The answer may be what makes RE Botanicals and John’s other ventures so special. The companies have a higher purpose. They use their muscle not to radically disrupt the industries in which they operate, with the goal of improving the health of people and preventing the destruction of our Earth.

RE Botanicals was recently awarded the 2019 NEXTY Award for Best New Hemp Product at this year’s Natural Products Expo West, a recognition for where the brand is taking the industry and a signal to retailers and online customers alike that RE Botanicals is a brand to watch. RE Botanicals is the next way John Roulac will quietly enter our lives and make our population healthier and our planet a little bit cleaner.

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