It’s all the rage – for those wishing to protect their skin from the ravages of time, tide, work, weather or just about anything else. When Nova Scotia Fisherman debuts their Sea Fennel & Bayberry and Seabuckthorn & Shea Lotions this spring, they will no doubt draw an enthusiastic crowd of devotees and onlookers at CHFA West.
If you were watching when the shout went up that “Thar Be Dragons,” you may remember that the team of Les Falconer and his uncle, Perley Beairsto drew more praise than bites from the dragons on the first-ever Dragon’s Den Family Special.
But that didn’t slow down this vibrant company that began a scant 15 years ago as a wee manufacturing plant in the Annapolis Valley. After more than a decade of private labeling for different companies, they decided to build some brand loyalty – to themselves. “Our main intentions,” says Beairsto, “were to create employment in rural Nova Scotia – and maybe a template for other companies to create similar opportunities in rural Canada. And we’re raising some funds for the Nature Conservancy of Canada while we’re at it. We developed our recipes over several years and infused them with kelp – which is a great product for skin.“
Since launching their new line at the 2012 CHFA show in Toronto, sales have gone up steadily. They’re now in 800 stores Canada wide and have made inroads into the UK, the US, Australia and NZ. And they’ve set their sights on Scandinavia.
The Nova Scotia Fisherman natural body care line has no synthetics or artificial ingredients and features lotions and soaps – including a new sea salt soap that just now hitting the market. Says Beairsto, “We have lips balms and a rescue balm which is great for anyone with superdry hands or cracked hands working outdoors and that sort of thing. (Also works on the feet) And we have a sea salt scrub and a cuticle cream. We have about 14 skus now.”
With just a small crew of nine and their current rapid growth, they’ll probably be creating a few more rural Nova Scotia employment opportunities by the end of the year.