Some people are turned off by the thought of animal products being used in their soap, and that’s cool. We are trying to make a vegetable based version of everything we do. In fact, some of our bars only have a vegetable version, so far.
We don’t want to rain on your parade by telling you what you should put on your skin, or why. You have ideas and opinions, and that’s what makes the world beautiful. It’s not for anybody else to tell you what to do with your own body, least of all someone who is trying to sell you some soap.
We would like to explain why we are using animal fats in some of our products though.
- The waste. When we started this business, we bought the equipment and some recipes from a wonderful, local lady that only used vegetable oils for her soaps. We started carrying on in her footsteps. A friend mentioned to save the fat from our pork to make soap with, so we did a batch for ourselves and it made some beautiful soap. We then found out that near us was a lot of fat being trimmed and thrown in the garbage. We are talking about more than we could ever use. We decided that instead of letting it all go in the trash, we would try to salvage what we could. We feel that if the animal has given it’s life, then every part of it should be used, whenever possible.
- Did I mention the beautiful soap? We found that lard made a harder, whiter bar than vegetable shortening, and it has great moisturizing qualities. This is just in our opinion, of course, but people seem to be happy with it so far. I guess time will tell whether it is a good fit for the company or not, but people have been making soap with it since around 1500 BC, so it can’t be too bad, right?
- Ethics. Most vegetable shortening is made from palm oil, which is arguably worse for animals (and the rest of the world) than most farming practices. Look up the impact that comes from oil palm plantations, and I think you’ll be a bit shocked. I know I was.
I’m still not trying to coax you into rubbing pork fat on your skin, just letting you see things from our perspective. Rendering lard is a long, greasy, fairly expensive process. We are hoping that selling soap will let us afford a turkey fryer, so that we might be able to streamline the process from our double boiler system. As it stands, we can render a few weeks of lard in a weekend, but that’s running the system 24/7 from Friday to Sunday, which I’m sure you’ll agree is pretty hard on the electrical bill, let alone the cheesecloth supply and our time. It really is much more economical to buy a few tubs of Crisco for $7 each and then save the time and money for more important things, but then it goes back to the previous points.
There is no win/win situation here, but we are hoping that will change in the future. Our friend, Karai, has told me that you can make soap from your own vegetables, so when we can get some property and do a larger scale farming operation, we will start looking into that option.
Anyhow, these are just a few thoughts we have, and are quite open to hear your views on the matter. Leave a comment here, or go to the Contact Us page and use one of those avenues.