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Inspiring Conversations with Faith Freeman of Primal Elements

Today we’d like to introduce you to Faith Freeman.

Hi Faith, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
Primal Elements began in 1993 in my mom’s Huntington Beach kitchen. We had a small bath and body store and began making soap at home to bring to our store. We had the idea that people needed interaction with one another and shoppers simply did not want to pluck an item off the shelf; so the idea of cutting freshly sliced soap was born. This allowed us to meet and talk with our customers learn about what they liked and what was not so appealing to them. Having a hands-on experience also kept the customer in the store longer allowing the customer to look at more products and perhaps create a larger scale. After a year or two, other store owners found our store and asked if it was possible to purchase our soaps for their own stores. Of course, we were excited about this opportunity and began selling soap to retailers across the country. This was exciting and challenging at the same time as I was spending less time in the store and more at home making soap. The soap business was doing such amazing business we decided that this was really the direction we should be taking so we closed the store in 1996 and began focusing on manufacturing. For many years the bulk of our business was selling to the gift and specialty channels of business, but over time, as the business grew, we were lucky enough (and worked hard enough) to get into larger chain and grocery stores. This really was a turning point for the business as we were able to grow and solidify our position as the industry leader in our space. We are very fortunate to have a very strong team supporting us and amazing customers that have been fans of the brand for nearly 30 years!

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
This journey definitely has not been a smooth one. Starting a business is challenging at best; but sustaining it for so long is hard work. Some of the bumps we faced were early on when we experienced rapid growth. This forced us to learn so much on the fly. Capital and financing is always something we focus on. It is important to constantly shop this even when you don’t think you need it. Also, personnel issues can be a struggle; especially in today’s employment climate. We do strive to have the best team around us. Since we have a product that is/was so unique we did not face headwinds in the marketing side of the business. We had something people wanted. There are issues that pop up every day that need attention, but those experiences make us smarter and stronger. As a company, we have really been through it all; whether it was the tragedy of 9/11, the economic hardships of 2007-2008, and now Covid, but we are proud to say we have made it through and continue to thrive.

Appreciate you sharing that. What should we know about Primal Elements?
I am very proud of our ability to innovate. We take everyday products that many consider to be quite mundane and turn them into something very special. I believe the high-quality ingredients paired with our creative sensibilities set us apart from others in our field. Most of all, I am so proud that we as a family have taken our dream of building an American business and turned it into something that supports so many other families.

Is there anyone you’d like to thank or give credit to?
First and foremost, our fabulous team deserves credit for their unique skills they bring to the job every day. May of our team members have been with us for more than ten years; and some even more and some are multi-generational. We have the best customers. They have supported our brand for so many years and their loyalty is humbling. We will attend tradeshows and our customers that are so invested in our brand end up doing the selling to new customers! We just stand back and let them do all the work for us. We are so lucky to have such a dedicated fan base. Finally, the biggest cheerleader for Primal Elements was my mother; grandma Sheila. She believed in our dream to build this company. In fact, she mortgaged her fully paid for home to give us the money to start this company, and for that we are truly grateful. The success of nearly 30 years of Primal Elements is a testament to her.

Pricing:

  • Soaps start at $9.50
  • Candles start at $30
  • Natural Deodorant $15

Contact Info:

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