Sourcing natural and organic materials has always been at the heart of Naturalmat’s sustainability ethos.
“Naturalmat was born to help people sleep in a healthier and more sustainable way. So right from day 1, we have sought organic certified suppliers for all our key materials, which we know will be better for you and for the Earth.” - Mark Tremlett, Naturalmat Founder
With rising awareness about the grave consequences of rapid climate change, consumers are increasingly choosing products that are better for the environment; which is great news for everyone! But what is organic farming and how does it benefit the Earth and our journey towards a sustainable future?
What Is Organic Farming?
Organic farming is a sustainable agricultural system that developed to counteract the environmentally damaging methods used in traditional farming, such as the use of chemical pesticides and synthetic fertilisers. Organic farming instead uses ecologically-based pest controls and biological fertilisers, such as those derived from animal and plant wastes.
Benefits of Organic Farming
Organic farming has many benefits over traditional farming, such as:
- Healthier and happier animals
- No additives in food
- No GMOs
- Fewer pesticides used
- Reduced soil erosion
- Reduced nitrates leaching into groundwater
- Recycles animal waste back into the farm
How We Support Organic Farming at Naturalmat
Local & Organic Wool
Our local and organic wool suppliers have quite a special story, one we’re very proud of. Surrounded by the beautiful green fields of Devon, flocked with white fluffy sheep, in 2010 we pioneered buying all of our wool directly from certified organic farmers on our doorstep.
We recently visited Coombe Farm Organic, one of our local and organic wool suppliers and talked to the Farm Manager, Ryan Sloman-Brown, who told us why he moved to organic farming systems and how they make a positive difference.
“I just really like how everything works in cycles, mutually benefitting the livestock, the soil and the crops. Organic farming is all about completing the circle, and making use of everything that you produce ; it's truly a regenerative way of thinking.”
At Coombe Farm, it was just another day of grazing the lush green fields for the happy little sheep. All of the farmland is organic, which means the grass and forage - which forms a big part of the sheep diet - grows naturally without any chemical or pesticide sprays. This is essential for maintaining healthy soils that can hold more water and store more carbon ; ultimately saving excessive use of water, preventing floods and droughts and also soaking up carbon from the atmosphere.
When it comes to wool farms, organic certification standards ensure the highest form of animal welfare for the sheep. Phoebe, the Head Shepherdess at Coombe Farm, tells us that they follow a preventative approach to diseases where they vaccinate the sheep and also regularly check them for early signs of infection. This enables them to find the problem early on and prevent it from spreading.
“When sheep are compacted in a shed there’s more opportunity for bugs and bacteria to grow. Being outside has so many advantages - it’s less stressful for the sheep, there’s less opportunity for illness, and sheep are free to go and behave more or less as they would in nature.”
Wool is a core material in most of our products, especially our wonderfully soft duvets and fluffy pillows, and we're proud to be sourcing it from sustainable, organic farms that are so close to home.
Coconut fibre, or coir, is an entirely natural fibre extracted from coconut husk and we love this springy, breathable material so much, we use it in almost every bed and mattress! Which means, it’s especially important for us to make sure it comes from a sustainable source.
We buy all of our coir from Sri Lanka, a land where the native coconut trees grow in abundance. We have carefully chosen a GOLS certified organic supplier, which means the coconuts are grown without any chemical pesticides and fertilisers, keeping the soils healthy and enhancing biodiversity. Organic certification standards also require farms to comply with high standards of worker welfare, so we can be confident that the farmers and workers are making a decent living in good working conditions.
The coir fibre extracted from the coconut tree is pressed into coir sheets which, when layered in our mattresses, provide strong, long-lasting support and exceptional breathability. We use coir in our entire range of natural fibre mattresses since it makes an excellent natural alternative to synthetic materials like memory foam, which are generally filled with toxins and chemicals.
When it came to sourcing the finest organic cotton bedding to match the quality of our beds and mattresses, we took our time to get things exactly right. Our quest led us right to the source in India, where all of the organic cotton is sustainably grown, without any chemical sprays and in healthy soils that need much less water. Conventional cotton farming is notorious for its excessive use of water, sometimes using up to 65% more than organic cotton, which contributes heavily towards its large carbon footprint. So it goes without saying that buying from an organic cotton supplier is key to saving this precious resource.
Our aim was to provide our customers with the softest, crispest and most sustainable bedding, so we did just that. We found a GOTS certified organic cotton supplier for our luxurious 500 thread count range of bed linen, which is 100% unbleached and undyed. By eliminating the middleman and buying direct from a Soil Association certified supplier, we are able to offer you the finest and softest organic bed linen at the best value, while also ensuring that the workers are treated well and paid fairly.
Naturally all of our organic cotton bedding comes in environmentally-friendly packaging as well. No plastic is used at all so your sheets are encased in recycled cardboard boxes and your duvets are folded into protective cotton drawstring bags (which can be repurposed into laundry or shoe bags!).
Organic farming offers widespread environmental benefits and when done right, actually helps nourish the Earth by restoring endangered wildlife, improving soil health and saving precious resources. Buying and choosing organic products wherever possible is the best way to support these sustainable farming practices and transition to a planet friendly future.