Living Green Group
New Zealand’s Leading Natural Products Manufacturer
Business View Oceania interviews Sigrid Mclisky and Chris Harper of Living Green Group for our Clean and Green focus.
Living Green Group began in 2013 as a solution to a lack of truly natural, healthy consumer products in New Zealand. Co-founders Nigel and Sigrid Mclisky worked together to challenge the current market standards for consumer and trade products from both an environmental and efficacy perspective. An idea was formed around the kitchen table that would turn into something truly remarkable. Living Green Group is a vertically integrated home, pet, baby, and health care provider that designs, develops, and manufactures ecologically sound, research-founded products derived from all natural ingredients. Products are based in meticulous green-chemistry research. Each and every ingredient is tested and proven to be a better, more natural choice, and is subsequently certified as such. Today, the company has proudly achieved the highest number of globally recognised natural and environmental certifications in the world, and now supplies over 700 product formulations across a variety of different brands.
Living Green Group’s vision is to be Australasia’s leader in the development and sale of innovative, sustainable natural and organic consumer products. Their range is of the highest ethical and accredited scientific standards in the world. Senior representatives believe that the utilisation of multiple brands will appeal to the widest range of ecologically conscious consumers. The company manufactures through their purpose-built contract manufacturing facility, Elitepac New Zealand (Ltd).
Elitepac acts as a manufacturer for Living Green brands and as a full-service contract packer for many other national and international OEM brands. It is an innovation-based manufacturing entity capable of producing thousands of bottled goods a day that works with customers to provide, advance, and export finished products around the globe. Elitepac supplies chemical formulations for a variety of sectors, including industrial, cleaning, food, automotive, education, health and hospitality. With the highest global quality assurance procedures which meet the requirements of Eco-warranty global eco standard, International ISO9001-2008 Certification, Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) Australian therapeutic goods Authority (TGA) Biogro Organic Certifications, Ministry of Primary Industries, New Zealand Dairy approvals and is currently undergoing Environmental Choice NZ and GECA. Manufacturing and contract packing a diverse range of products from liquid cosmetics and skin care, household and commercial cleaners and chemicals, personal care and toiletries, medical and holistic products, and veterinary products.
Senior representatives Sigrid McLisky (Living Green Group, Cofounder and Managing Director), Tim James ( Living Green Group, National Sales Manager) and Chris Harper (Cleanlab, National Sales Manager) share the Living Green Group story. Miss. Mclisky begins, “After a while creating products to use in our own home, Nigel (my father) and I realised our experience and passion for making a difference in the chemical industry would allow us to do something important, together. Such a significant gap in the New Zealand market meant that very few biodegradable and sustainable products existed at all; the ones that did were often either ineffective, misleading, or overly expensive. We sought to remedy that and are proud of what we have achieved so far. It’s been a fascinating journey with many great moments and some incredibly difficult ones. Starting a business with my father and getting to spend every day with him has been the biggest blessing in the world. We feel extremely lucky to be able to provide the products and services that we do to the people that we do.”
Living Green Group believes in and operates via a ‘Key P’ focus: purpose, promise, people, and the planet. Dedication to each of these areas is at the core of everything the company does. Miss. Mclisky shares, “We wanted to have a business that was driven and motivated by purpose, we believed in helping solve environmental and health problems through delivering great products while reducing harm to our planet. We hold ourselves and our products accountable to the people that purchase them and support our community where we can, while maintaining our responsibility to the environment and measuring ourselves against a yardstick to lead by example in improving New Zealand’s product and trade standards. We believe strongly in the importance of green living, green energy, and sustainability for a healthier lifestyle at work and home. We look to nature for innovation, we support lab coats, not lab animals, and we invest back into the environment whenever possible.”
Living Green Group is well on their way to embracing carbon neutrality. A journey that sits at the heart of everything Living Green Group does, the company works towards offsetting their emissions through the purchase of carbon credits to prevent greenhouse gases from entering the atmosphere. As of 2021, every sale made goes towards offsetting emissions through reforestation and carbon setting projects. Miss. Mclisky explains, “With each trade focused commercial sale, we work with well established groups to invest in newly planted trees. We also purchase certified carbon offsets to trade the unavoidable emissions that arise from running a business. Our main consumer-facing brand, Living Green, is recognised by the United States Natural Products Association (USNPA), which is the oldest and most respected certifier of products that use natural ingredients. Unlike many ecological certifications, they only allow a very narrow selection of the most natural ingredients to be used in the development of certified product recipes and formulations. It’s not just about the type of ingredients; it’s the way they are extracted from natural sources and transformed into usable products. Sustainability is social, economic, and environmental. It’s important that we look at every piece of the puzzle, and organisations like USNPA help make sure that happens.”
Living Green Group would like to highlight major consumer-facing derivative brands Hitit, Sigrids Econo-Green, Baby All Safe, PetsLove, Sleepzi, Clini-x, and its commercial trade brand CleanLab. As Cleanlab National Sales Manager, Mr. Harper “Cleaning products are necessary for maintaining attractive and healthy conditions in the workplace. In addition to the obvious aesthetic benefits of cleaning, the removal of dust, allergies, and infectious agents is crucial to maintain a healthy indoor environment. Our commercial CleanLab range is dedicated to providing the most effective green commercial cleaning products. Unlike other cleaning chemical manufacturers, who are heavily reliant on synthetic ingredients, CleanLab began with a total focus on environmental sustainability, utilising natural plant surfactants and botanicals wherever possible. CleanLab offers a complete suite of products enabling customers to transition into a greener lifestyle.”
Living Green Group will continue to develop their ability to support the environment and those who rely on it going forward. Key goals for development and innovation surround the usage of water, energy, sustainable materials, and the reduction, and eventual elimination, of unnecessary carbon emissions. Tim James shares his confidence in the company’s future. “The top of our agenda is growth; we have a large variety of brands in very different categories. Feedback from customers in these categories has been incredibly positive, making our core agenda to share the word about these products to more retailers in New Zealand, Australia, and abroad, and to become recognised as leaders in our sphere. What we are doing is important, and I truly believe that we will continue making positive change as our industry advances.”
Living Green Group would like to conclude by thanking their key business partners Countdown supermarkets, Bed Bath and Beyond, Mitre 10, and Gilmours (Foodstuffs North Island). Living Green Group has worked hand in hand with Countdown supermarkets supplying green home cleaning products, baby products, and sanitiser products both for retail and non-retail use. Bed Bath and Beyond was one of the very early adopters of Living Greens first retail products. Mitre 10 is one of Living Green’s newer retail customers, working with new Living Green Group brands including sanitisers to help combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Gilmours have been supplied with the Living Green Group Econogreen cleaning range since 2013; this year, both companies are excited to announce the Econogreen has become exclusive to Gilmours. And Hygiene House who has become an avid adopter of the Cleanlab green cleaner commercial product offering.
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AT A GLANCE
Living Green Group
What: Developer and manufacturer of all-natural home, pet, baby, skin, and health care products.
Where: Living Green Group is headquartered in Auckland, New Zealand.