Dr. Bronner’s Now Sources 100% of the Organic Hemp Seed Oil in its Soap and Other Products from U.S. Farmers
Top-Selling Natural Soap Brand Achieves Goal of Sourcing Hemp Seed Oil from American Farmers After More Than 20 Years of Advocacy to Change U.S. Law
June 9, 2020
VISTA, CA – Dr. Bronner’s, family owned maker of the top-selling natural brand of soap in North America, has announced it now sources its entire supply, approximately 30 metric tons annually, of USDA Organic hemp seed oil used in its soap and other body care products, from U.S. farmers. A profound and long-sought accomplishment for Dr. Bronner’s, this achievement marks the cumulative success of more than two decades of committed advocacy by the company to legalize hemp farming in the U.S., including the donation of more than $3.6 million to legalization efforts over the past two decades; widespread public education and grassroots advocacy organizing per the Hemp History Week campaign; and engagement in numerous legal battles to protect the right of U.S. farmers to cultivate this versatile and sustainable crop.
“Bringing hemp back to the American agricultural landscape is a big win for farmers, consumers, environmentalists and sustainable manufacturers alike, and we’re proud to support the growing U.S. hemp industry with our dedicated business,” said David Bronner, Cosmic Engagement Officer of Dr. Bronner’s. “We will continue the fight to further dismantle unjust federal prohibition of cannabis cultivation in the U.S., so that the full healing potential of this plant is realized—for the sake of our health and the planet.”
Rich in vitamin E, Omega-3 and Omega-6 essential fatty acids, hemp seed oil is deeply hydrating to the skin, and makes for smooth soap lather and more moisturizing after-feel. Dr. Bronner’s sources domestic hemp oil from a variety of supply partners including Victory Hemp Foods, founded in 2015, which produces USDA Organic Hemp Seed Oil sourced from farmers in Kentucky, Michigan, Montana, Texas, and Washington.
“Dr. Bronner’s has been a leading voice and contributor working to change federal legislation allowing hemp to be grown here in the U.S. The company’s purchasing power has allowed us to expand contracts and acreage to prioritize U.S. farmers making organic hemp part of a rotation that helps to build soil and sequester carbon,” said Chad Rosen, Founder and CEO of Victory Hemp Foods. “As a value-add processor that is contracting farmers and converting farm commodities into ingredients, it is critical that we align with customers that share our goal to shape the supply chain into one that will result in a positive outcome for our farmers and the environment. We’re very fortunate to work with Dr. Bronner’s team, and are excited to be making a positive impact in our communities.”
Hemp is a renewable and sustainable resource for both fiber and seed, used in textiles, paper, construction, foods, body care and other industry sectors. Hemp is a fast-growing plant that can be readily incorporated into regenerative organic crop rotations, which can sequester carbon from the atmosphere into soil through regenerative agricultural techniques such as no-till cover cropping and biomass composting, thereby mitigating agriculture’s contribution to climate change. Sourcing hemp from U.S. farmers also contributes to the revitalization of rural farming communities. Dr. Bronner’s is committed to sourcing from family farmers in rural American communities, who are at risk of losing their land, livelihood and agricultural heritage in the face of corporatized conventional agriculture; thereby supporting local economic resiliency.
Timeline of Dr. Bronner’s Hemp Farming Legalization Advocacy
Dr. Bronner’s reformulates its iconic Pure-Castile Liquid Soap to incorporate hemp seed oil, for smoother lather and more moisturizing after-feel; the company begins sourcing organic hemp seed oil from Canadian farmers, where hemp farming was legalized the year prior in 1998.
Dr. Bronner’s begins 20 years of financial support to Vote Hemp, the nation’s leading hemp farming legalization advocacy group.
DEA agents violate the Sioux Treaty of 1868 by illegally entering the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation to destroy Alex White Plume’s hemp crop and intimidate other Pine Ridge farmers considering hemp cultivation. White Plume’s hemp crop had been planted legally, per an ordinance the Oglala Sioux Tribe had previously passed under White Plume’s leadership, two years prior, to allow hemp farming on Pine Ridge. Dr. Bronner’s donates $25,000 to support White Plume’s legal defense.
Dr. Bronner’s coordinates and funds the hemp industry’s legal battle against the DEA, known as the “Hemp Food Rules Challenge,” which the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled unanimously in favor of the plaintiffs, in 2004, and thereby successfully protected hemp food, body care and other products from DEA’s attempt to prohibit hemp goods as Schedule I Controlled Substances.
Dr. Bronner’s expands its product line with new products including USDA Lip and Body Balms, Organic Sugar Soap, Shaving Soap, Hair Cremes and Rinse, and Lotions, all of which incorporate organic hemp seed oil as a key moisturizing ingredient.
CEO David Bronner engages in civil disobedience by planting hemp seeds on the front lawn of the DEA headquarters.
Dr. Bronner’s is a founding architect of the Hemp History Week campaign, which over the next 10 years educates millions of American consumers about the benefits of hemp products, and builds grassroots momentum in support of the crop’s legalization.
CEO David Bronner protests the federal prohibition of hemp farming by locking himself in a steel cage resembling a jail cell along with live hemp plants in front of the White House, and proceeds to harvest the seeds and press them for oil while explaining the purpose of his act of protest to all who gathered, including international media.
Dr. Bronner’s donates $50,000 to the Kentucky Industrial Hemp Commission, funding the group’s research efforts with the goal to establish a firm foundation for the hemp industry in that state, and beyond.
For the first time on U.S. soil since federal prohibition was enacted, a hemp crop is legally planted in Colorado; Dr. Bronner’s leadership joins in the crop’s harvest to celebrate.
In 2016, Dr. Bronner’s celebrates in solidarity with Alex White Plume, former President of the Oglala Sioux Lakota Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, as he emerges victorious from a 16 year-long court battle defending the right of his tribe to cultivate hemp on their tribal lands.
In 2017, Dr. Bronner’s donates $100,000 to The Rodale Institute, the leading organic research institution in the U.S., to support the organization’s multi-year research study on hemp cultivation within a regenerative organic farming model. The Rodale Institute’s current research on hemp focuses on the crop’s role in improving soil health in various organic crop rotations, its efficacy as a cover crop to suppress weeds, and its biomass and seed yields among four varieties of industrial hemp seed.
The Farm Bill is signed into law, lifting prohibition on hemp farming in the U.S. per the Section 10113 titled “Hemp Production,” which removes hemp from the Controlled Substances Act.
Dr. Bronner’s celebrates hemp farming legalization with the 10th annual and final Hemp History Week, Return of the Plant! The company begins the process of building its U.S. farmed organic hemp seed oil supply chain.
Dr. Bronner’s achieves its goal of sourcing 100% of its organic hemp seed oil used in its body care products from U.S. farmers, a total of approximately 30 metric tons annually.
Dr. Bronner’s commitment to hemp farming legalization has been a pillar of the company’s broader activism on drug policy reform; as well as the inspiration for the company’s commitment to regenerative organic agriculture.
About Dr. Bronner’s
Dr. Bronner’s is a family business committed to honoring the vision of founder Emanuel Bronner by making socially and environmentally responsible products of the highest quality, and by dedicating profits to help make a better world. Dr. Bronner’s commitment to social justice, environmental sustainability and progressive business practices is part of the company’s mission to put into practice the principles that inform the philosophy printed on the company’s iconic soap labels written by founder Emanuel Bronner. The company is the top-selling natural soap maker in North America and a major brand worldwide. Based on 2019 sales, a bottle of Dr. Bronner’s soap was sold, on average, every 2.04 seconds throughout the year. For further information, please visit: https://www.drbronner.com/