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SPA’s, Skincare, & concerts for the planet: Yves Rocher’s green track record

October 29, 2010

Yves Rocher is a man I get more and more impressed by the more I learn about him and … unfortunately he is no longer with us, but his organisation continues apace in line with his ideals.

In my early twenties I got into his skincare range as I liked the natural products on offer and of course the fact they were French, so quite enough to impress me then. Now a few years down the track, my love of France has brought me here to live, I’ve ramped up my Yves Rocher contact as here it is a high street presence and often in the news. Just recently several things have made me really sit up and take notice just how influential they have become in the green movement.

So, to give some background, we are all (more or less) beginning to get the “sustainable ethic” thing, but Yves Rocher was someone who was already out there doing it for real, starting up his business more than 50 years ago back in 1959. He came from a small village in Brittany called Gacilly (an hour away from my in-laws’ beach house as it happens) where, on seeing the lack of employment and a general exodus to the cities, he decided to create some employment opportunities to keep the place alive. He opened a small factory producing natural skincare products, often with organically produced ingredients, so from a social perspective as well as environmental, talk about leading the way…

SPA life

Gacilly is also where an Yves Rocher Hotel & SPA was built 2 years ago entirely in line with environmental concerns, using natural local construction materials, surrounded by wetlands, again providing employment, providing treatments with natural products and modern water saving techniques, and serving organic meals, thus dispelling myths that a SPA is automatically an anti-enviromental concern. The 2010 French Sustainable Tourism Awards backs this up giving them first place in their accommodation section up against stiff competition from 195 candidates.

(Photo Yves Drévillon)
Link here to their site for more details. (For info in english click the EN on the small drop down box at the top RHS)

Concert for the Planet
Then a couple of weeks ago the Yves Rocher Foundation sponsored the 10:10:10 Concert for the Planet held in front of Paris City Hall featuring mostly francophone artists such as Tété, Camelia Jordana, Tryo, Abd al Malik, Asa, Liz Mc Comb & Marc Jolivet and attracting a crowd of more than 10,000.
There were also several active anti-global warming organisations there so it was a real day of action as well as entertainment! The message was very simple: without changing much in our everyday lives, it is possible for each and every one of us to reduce our C02 emissions by 10% …

Hot off the press!!!
Without wanting to wax lyrical too much, there is one last thing I’d like to mention. Every year, since 2001, the YR Foundation awards a prize to women from around the world who fight for nature conservation by way of their “Women of the Earth” award, but in addition to this, and in conjunction with Mondadori, a new award has just been announced, designated “Prix des femmes pour le développement durable” (loosely translated as “Women for Sustainable Development”) inviting applications from those enterprising women amongst you who want to set up a sustainable development project and are seeking funds for it… so whether you are just visiting France or wanting to set up on your own here, Yves Rocher has lots to offer you and many other businesses could learn from their example.

Please note that this article is entirely GreenstaysinFrance© own initiative and no incentives have been given or offered to promote the Yves Rocher brand. Basically if I like something I am happy to promote it for free!!!

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