Five years ago and with a passion for the planet, Julie Mathers founded Flora & Fauna, an online store specialising in vegan, ethical and cruelty-free products.
Today, the retailer stocks Australia’s largest range of cruelty-free products. Next week Mathers will continue to buck the trend by opening the doors to her first bricks and mortar store in Sydney’s North Rocks.
Having worked in retail for more than two decades with roles in the UK, Asia and Australia, Mathers says she understands the significant impact retail has on the planet.
“I had a vision to create change along with a passion for our planet and everything that lives on it, so I decided to create a destination to help customers make better choices,” she explains.
“Although we’ve grown significantly since we launched, I’m proud to say we have retained our purpose and values.”
Mathers prides herself on delivering uncompromising products to Australia’s vegan community.
“We’ve grown a beautiful, blooming community with shared values. I never want to have to question what we do because an investor’s goals potentially don’t align with ours,” she adds.
Currently, Flora & Fauna stocks over 6,000 products – from natural deodorants, reusable nappies, cruelty-free makeup to vegan Mac’n’Cheese.
Watch the story of another eco-friendly business Little Earth Nest
“Our purpose is to help everyone make better choices. That’s at the centre of what we do so we’re helping people, the planet and our fellow animal friends by sharing great advice, initiatives and fantastic products with low impact,” she said.
The new brick and mortar store will officially open on July 13. Mathers describes it as “an experiential marketplace”. She says customers will be able to discover vegan and cruelty-free products through pop-up stalls and participate in workshops.
The bricks and mortar store will offer a recycling point for customers to drop off their plastic beauty containers to be recycled via the Flora & Fauna Terracycle Program. It will also feature Australia’s first eco-store bulk refill station, allowing customers to bring their own containers to refill with shampoo, conditioner, dish liquid and laundry liquid.
“Australian shoppers are more conscious than ever, and they want to contribute to a better world and a more sustainable future with their purchases,” Mathers said.
Flora & Fauna also works very closely with animal rescue charity Where Pigs Fly Farm Sanctuary along with Sea Shepherd Australia, and have offset all their carbon emissions.
“Our first store is the perfect destination to learn more about reducing your impact and choosing better products. We’re all getting more conscious about what we consume and we need a place we can trust that helps us make better choices. That place is Flora & Fauna,” said Mathers