2019 Advisory Board

Smithers Rapra collaborated with thought-leaders from across the Cosmetics industry to put together the 2019 Sustainability & Naturals in Cosmetics programme.

  • Jan Kusmirek

    NPD Consultant Genera and Fragrant Earth (Elemis Ltd, Nude Skincare and Kanebo)

    Jan Kusmirek has had a varied career associated with Green Issues. He was Marketing Manager at the Soil Association, introducing the symbol scheme to cosmetic and health products. Campaigns have included acid rain, whole milk, water pollution and bio degradability. As an agricultural Co-Ordinator and manager in both industrial plastics and with a major co-operative he gained an understanding of livestock farming and horticulture introducing a number of novel practices.

    He trained as a Naturopath and Medical herbalist and his practice led him to specialise in skin conditions. His use of natural and naturally derived material led him to the creation of quasi medical products and eventually cosmetic design in association with Alban Muller International. The Origins brand was created followed by the ground breaking  Elemis brand, Nude Skincare and through his Genera Consultancy many other projects followed.

    The Fragrant Earth Company was founded by him to bring some reality and ethics into the supply chain of aromatic and natural materials. Knowing the extraction industry enabled his specialist company to find niche markets for artisan and organic production. Today the Company is a driving force in aromatherapy, natural perfumery and in creative orthodox fragrance serving a variety of sectors.

    • United Kingdom
  • Rowena Bird

    Co-founder & Product Inventor Lush

    Drawn to the beauty industry from an early age, Rowena trained and qualified as a beauty therapist before fortuitously joining the creators of Lush in their small manufacturing company of the time, Constantine and Weir (C&W). As C&W developed into the successful mail order brand Cosmetics to Go (CTG), Rowena developed many adventurous colours and best sellers, proving her eye for commercial success. In Lush, Ro’s unique flair for design shows through in everything she creates and
    in 2012 she invented Lush’s first colour cosmetics range, Emotional Brilliance. Along with invention, Ro is also responsible for finding new business partners around the world and oversees the Lush Spa and global expansion of the brand.

    • United Kingdom
  • Francis Blake

    Chief Advisor COSMOS-standard AISBL

    After graduating with an Agricultural and Forest Sciences degree from Oxford University, Francis set up and ran for 10 years his own organic farm and fresh produce wholesale business in Somerset, where he still lives – the farmyard is now converted into 18 small business units. 

    He wrote Organic Farming and Growing – a Guide to Management (Crowood Press) and founded the Organic Advisory Service in conjunction with Elm Farm Research Centre, serving as an advisor for 2 years. 

    In 1986 he joined Soil Association Certification as managing director. After 14 years, he moved into the parent charity as Soil Association standards director, responsible for all the organisation’s organic standards, including launching its Health & Beauty Standards in 2002.  In 2010, he took a step back, becoming (part time) policy advisor, and finally retired from the Soil Association in 2017.

    Francis was the founding president of the IFOAM EU Regional Group (International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements) since its formation in 2000 until 2009, and similarly of the COSMOS-standard AISBL from 2010 until October 2017.  He remains involved as chief advisor to COSMOS.   

    He is married to an acupuncturist and his hobbies include gardening, beekeeping, walking, learning the mandolin and he holds a black belt in Ki Aikido.

    • United Kingdom
  • Jo Chidley

    The 'Flounder' Beauty Kitchen

    Jo Chidley is the ‘Flounder’ of Beauty Kitchen, which creates natural, effective beauty products.

    Jo is a Chemist, Herbal Botanist, beekeeper and natural beauty products lover and is committed that Beauty Kitchen 100% makes a difference, from ensuring all products, not just the ingredients are sustainable as possible.

    • United Kingdom
  • Rachel Rowntree

    Director of Marketing & Strategy Inovia International

    Working within the beauty & cosmetics industry I work with companies to analyse their product range, design sales & marketing strategies and then ensure they can implement them to achieve growth. I specialise in understanding the consumer and what makes them say yes at the point of purchase as well as knowing the retailer and their specific aims, then I bring them together to create successful brands.

    • United Kingdom
  • Dr Mark Smith

    Director General NATRUE

    Running of NATRUE, lead role in all political, regulatory and scientific affairs of the association - advocacy, research and label.

    Mark graduated with M.Chem (Hons.) degree in chemistry and an interdisciplinary Ph.D. between chemistry and genetics. Before joining NATRUE in June 2014, he extended his research career with two positions covering biotechnology (Leeds, UK) and the biomedical/pharmaceutical sector (Montréal, Canada). Mark is a British national who has more than five years' experience in Scientific Management, and during the last ten years, he has been involved in the successful coordination of strategic and collaborative interdisciplinary projects via academic departmental and international research. Mark became Director in July 2016.

    • Belgium