Josephine Fairley entrepreneur and activist who co-founded the pioneering organic chocolate company Green & Black’s. An inspiring, engaging and passionate speaker whose story is as fascinating to entrepreneurs as it is to wider business or educational audiences both in the UK and internationally.
In 1991, Jo Fairley co-founded the pioneering organic chocolate company Green & Black’s (with her husband Craig Sams), which has now gone on to be ‘bigger than Marmite’ (in sales terms) and ‘cooler than Prada’ (according to two Coolbrands surveys. In 2005, the brand was sold to Cadbury’s for around £20 million, but Jo remains in an ambassadorial role, traveling the world as the brand grows internationally in countries including the US and Australia. In 2008 Jo and her husband Craig Sams collaborated on Sweet Dreams: The Story of Green & Black’s (Random House).
Jo now runs Judges Bakery – an organic one-stop shop – and The Wellington Centre, an 11-room ‘boutique’ wellbeing centre, in her home town of Hastings. She continues to juggle this with her writing career. Although she left school at 16 (with six ‘O’ Levels), by the age of 23 Jo was the youngest-ever magazine editor in the UK, editing first Look Now and then Honey Magazine. She is a Contributing Editor to the Mail on Sunday’s YOU Magazine, as well as to a very wide range of publications including the forthcoming National Geographic Green.
She is the co-author (with Sarah Stacey) of the bestselling Beauty Bible series of books, the world’s bestselling beauty books, including: The Beauty Bible, Feel Fab Forever: The Anti-Ageing Health & Beauty Bible, The 21st Century Beauty Bible, The Handbag Beauty Bible and most recently The Green Beauty Bible, which combines her ‘green’ expertise with her insights into the beauty world. She is also author of The Ultimate Natural Beauty Book (all these books published by Kyle Cathie). Jo and Sarah’s website, www.beautybible.com, is among the most successful beauty websites in the UK, with 55,000 subscribers.
For eight years Jo chaired the Soil Association’s Health Products Standards Committee, helping to set the standards for organic and natural bodycare in the UK. She is a ‘matron’ of the Women’s Environmental Network, runs makeover workshops for young women at Centrepoint and sits on the Human Rights Watch Film Festival committee.