Welcome to the first post in our Expert Series: where really smart people share some really inspiring things with the From the Ground Up community!
I'm thrilled this week to introduce a truly terrific woman who is at the forefront of the organic movement for whole-life wellness.
Meet Suzanne Price, founder and owner of Sprout San Francisco, an all-natural, organic children's boutique with locations in San Fran, New York, and Chicago (as well as an incredible online store). The company works hard to provide families everything they need to create a healthy environment at home for their child, as well as providing education on healthy products through their website and in-store sales staff.
Suzanne is on a crusade to make it easier for parents to create a healthy home for their children. Previously a Senior Equity Research Analyst focusing on the Green Living Consumer Sector at ThinkEquity, a San Francisco based investment bank, Suzanne spent years studying organic consumer products and learning about the impact of toxic chemicals on our bodies.
She and her husband are parents to two sweet little ladies, Hannah and Amber, who have (unsurprisingly) been the inspiration for much of the work Suzanne does. She is active in educating the public about the important of choosing organic and serves on the board of Children's Environmental Health Center at Mount Sinai Hospital in NYC.
I asked Suzanne to weigh in on the importance of organic living for full-family wellness. Here's what she had to say:
Why is the organic movement important to you? How do you see it extending beyond food? How did you fall into it?
It's important to me because I truly believe in the health consequences. I believe pesticides are bad for us and we shouldn't eat them. This extends to personal care and household cleaners too. There are so many chemicals in the products that we use every day that really aren't good for us. I fell into it because at my old job I started to learn about all of these toxins around us that the average person has no idea exist. I felt like I had to do something about it.
What's the most challenging part of organic parenting?
That's easy. Convenience. When we're out with the girls, I really need to think about what they are going to eat. It would be easiest to just order them chicken nuggets at a restaurant or let them eat non-organic strawberries at a birthday party, and sometimes I do. But the more we are out and about, the less control I have over them eating the right things. I just do what I can do and make sure they eat organic at home, but parenting would be a lot more convenient if I didn't really care what they were eating when we are on the go.
Tell me about the healthy habits you cultivate for your girls at home. How does this reflect your own attitude towards wellness and taking care of yourself?
Besides eating organic and of course trying to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables, we make sure they get enough sleep and hardly watch any TV. We don't watch much TV ourselves and we try to eat well, but focusing on our kids' health has definitely made us be more conscious of our own. It's so hard to get bogged down in day to day responsibilities and not take care of yourself, but you can't let that slip with the kids.
What's in your fridge?
Curly kale to make kale chips, lots of organic milk for the girls, organic berries, organic broccoli, organic cheese sticks, lots of condiments and some Chardonnay.
What is the biggest challenge facing conscientious consumers, particularly when it comes to new families?
Cost. Unfortunately, many organic products are more expensive than their conventional counterparts. Until better government regulation evens the playing field and forces the bigger companies to make better products, the smaller organic companies won't have the benefit of scale. If the people who can afford to continue to demand organic, overtime more companies will come up with healthier, cheaper options to serve that growing market and hopefully the competition between companies will bring prices down for everyone.
For more information on Sprout San Francisco, great ways to keep your home clean and green, and some fabulous organic products to make things just a little easier, check out www.sproutsanfrancisco.com.