W.S. Badger Company | Explore a New England Company
If you walk by my office right now, you will smell a potpourri of cayenne and ginger (Badger Muscle Rub for my sore shoulder), pink grapefruit (my lips feel silky soft smoothed with Badger lip balm) and beeswax. I smell good and I feel good.
Who is this Badger? Why do I love him…or her…or it?
W.S Badger Company, Inc.–located in Gilsum, New Hampshire, population around 800 and about 15 minutes from Keene– is a family-owned and -operated business. In the mid-nineties, founder Bill Whyte, a carpenter at the time, started tinkering with a hand balm formula combining beeswax and olive oil to relieve his dry cracked hands. Today, the company employs around 40 people and makes the “world’s finest Healthy Body Care products;” including items such as sunscreen, lip balms, body care, herbal problem solvers like muscle and joint balms or sleep balms.
I had the chance to explore Badger’s new facility last weekend during their annual Tent Sale and I left feeling completely inspired. I knew that Badger products contained zero chemicals, synthetics, parabens, GMOs, but what I really took away from my tour of the grounds is that this is a company that lives and breathes its mission and principles.
To create fabulously pure and effective products of the highest natural quality, based on simplicity and thoughtful preparation, with the intention to protect, soothe and heal.
To run a business that is fun, fair and profitable; where money is fuel, not a goal; and where our vision for a healthier world finds expression through the way we work and through the way we treat each other and the people we serve.
- Individual responsibility in a team concept
- Personal and caring approach in communications
- Supporting organic, sustainable agriculture through our purchasing practices
- A business environment that is respectful and supportive of all employees, and of the people we serve
- Personal and social healing through our charitable giving
- Environmental responsibility
- Honesty and integrity in our business practices
- Fun is good
(Above is from Badger’s Web site.)
In 2010, the company started construction on their–now open–truly environmentally friendly headquarters. It’s heated and cooled with water-source heat pump with a propane boiler and cooling tower. Much of the building’s wood was sourced locally. They used non-toxic materials throughout the building; natural linoleum for the lab and bathroom floors. The list goes on. And their philosophy of doing good things in a thoughtful way extends throughout all aspects of the company.
What else? An organic lunch for each employee every day. Yoga twice a week. The smell of beeswax. A lasagna style compost pile. A soon-to-be constructed labrynth. A wild hive for bees. A successful company that works hard, plays hard, and does good. That is “Good Stuff.” And it all smells really good, too.