AUSTRALIAN family business Dr Pickles has admitted to being “pretty stupid” in regards to the packaging of its vegan paw paw balm, but has reaffirmed there are no animal products in the healing cream.
Dr Pickles errantly listed bees wax and manuka honey on its packaging for the vegan balm, after a printing error went unrectified by an employee.
The conceived presence of these two ingredients has led to uproar by some vegans on social media forums, including Vegans in Australia, which has 59,000 members.
“We had 10,000 tubes erroneously printed with those animal derivatives among the ingredients, but that list actually pertained to a previous product,” said Dr Pickles director Nigel Soden, one of three rural Queensland-raised brothers behind the product.
“When the tubes were delivered the error was spotted and a request was made to destroy the packaging, but that evidently never happened. That was a pretty stupid move on our behalf.
“I can assure everybody that we take the vegan lifestyle very seriously and we have many longstanding friends and associates who subscribe to that ethos.
“We have not intended to deceive or upset anybody, and I can make absolute assurances that there is no bees wax or manuka honey in Dr Pickles vegan paw paw balm.”
Dr Pickles went the added step of requesting and receiving an affidavit from their supplier to confirm there was no presence of either offending ingredient in the product being sold under the vegan label.
“We can confirm this product does not use any raw materials of animal origin in the manufacture and is not tested on animals,” the statement read.
Dr Pickles has been around for the past eight years, growing from humble beginnings to being an emerging player on the world stage of tattoo aftercare and lifestyle products.
The business is Australian-owned, Australian-operated and made with the highest-quality Australian ingredients.
Aside from having a commitment to natural ingredients and being paraben and sulfate-free, Dr Pickles has a charter to contribute to community projects and supports patients with breast cancer and sponsors grassroots sporting teams.
Mr Soden has offered his mobile phone number – 0426 065 099 – for members of the community who wish to seek assurances about the legitimacy of the vegan product.
“When you stuff up, you should front up,” he said.
“We are, and will continue to be, committed to ethically-sourced, quality ingredients, and to our social responsibilities.”