MARCH 27, 2020
To our Lush Community,
It’s been two weeks since we made the announcement to temporarily close North American Lush stores in an effort to help flatten the curve on the spread of Covid-19. It has become increasingly clear that the effects of this virus are going to be even more disruptive to our business and our communities than we’d originally anticipated. We have had to accept that our temporary shop closures will remain in place until it’s safe for them to reopen, to scale back operations in manufacturing and to plan for our business in a post-pandemic world.
Throughout this uncertain time, our passionate staff have been at the heart of every decision we make. In an early effort to minimize the impact on our staff, the business took immediate cost saving measures including reducing non-essential activities, halting all travel and suspending recruitment. The senior leadership team have taken a 25 percent salary reduction and remain focused on getting our staff, communities and business through this crisis with a fighting chance.
So what does that look like? Heartbreakingly, it looks like operating as a much smaller business while our shops are shut down. Upon reopening, we expect that the growth will be slow and steady, and that it will take significant time to get back to the size we were a few weeks ago. This truly is a reality we never imagined we would be facing.
When we first closed our shop doors, we committed to paying our teams for two weeks and have done so. Sadly, we have now had to make the unimaginable decision to permanently part ways with some of our more recent hires in retail and manufacturing and have reduced the workforce in our woodshop teams. Each staff member was offered severance pay to help ease their financial responsibilities at this difficult time. We are forever grateful for the hard work, passion and enthusiasm they brought to Lush. We truly hope to welcome these team members back in the future.
In preparation for when we resume operations, we are retaining our retail and manufacturing managers for the duration of our closures. Where possible, we have offered temporary layoffs to their team members, allowing them to receive financial support from Lush in addition to the government relief programs. We look forward to welcoming them back once we re-open our shops and factories. They are still very much a part of the Lush family.
Fortunately, today we are still able to meet our customers’ needs through our online business where our digital teams are working in safe and controlled environments to get your Lush packages to your door safely and swiftly. We hope you will continue to allow us to brighten your day in the Lush way.
Thank you for your support as we navigate this uncharted territory. We look to the future with optimism and sincere gratitude to our incredible staff and community. We are doing our best to make decisions and operate the only way we know how: honestly and transparently.
Stay safe and wash those hands.
Karen and Mark Wolverton
MARCH 15, 2020
A letter to our Lush Community,
As we face the ever-changing circumstances related to Covid-19, we find ourselves having to make unprecedented decisions about business as usual. And the truth is that, in this moment, there is no business as usual. Amongst this uncertainly, we are focused on three things: getting our staff, communities and business through this crisis so that all emerge fit to face the future together.
Given what we know today, we believe it’s our duty as an ethical business to do what we can to slow the spread of this virus and minimize the impact on our hardworking healthcare professionals. As such, we have decided to temporarily close all 258 Lush retail stores across Canada and the US from March 16-29. Because our products are all made fresh by hand weekly for our shops, these closures will also require us to significantly scale down our manufacturing and distribution operations for the duration of the shop closures. We are working through how we can best support our employee base through these changes, ensuring regular pay for all staff during this period.
For the time being, we have made the decision to keep our online business running so that our loyal customers can still access Lush products such as soap, which can be helpful during this critical time. With the reduced capacity across the business, our digital orders may take extra time to reach you and we appreciate your understanding and patience with our teams during this transition.
As the situation surrounding Covid-19 rapidly changes, we will continue to evolve our response to it. With the temporary shop closures, we can now put 100 percent of our energy into supporting our staff and their ever-evolving needs in the new reality we face together. Because facing it together is the only way forward. This is unchartered territory for many of us, so please remember to be kind and do what you can as individuals to protect what every one of us values above all—one another.
And for those of you out there providing essential services who don’t have the option of shutting your doors, we truly appreciate you.
Stay safe and wash those hands,
Karen and Mark Wolverton
MARCH 13, 2020
To our Loyal Lushies,
As a company that cares deeply about protecting people, animals and the planet, we believe it’s our duty to look after each other and those around us during challenging times such as these. Lush North America has been closely monitoring Covid-19 and is doing our part to protect our staff and customers while also reducing the impact to our precious frontline health care workers. We are currently meeting daily to assess and react to the latest news, medical advice and government measures. We also recognize the need to be transparent with each of you on what measures we are taking to minimize the risk to our staff, customers and overall community.
In alignment with the WHO and the CDC, here are some of the actions we are taking across Lush North America to keep our communities safe:
- We have increased the level of deep cleaning and continue to maintain the strict adherence to our rigorous standards of cleanliness and sanitary procedures in our shops, distribution centers and administrative offices.
- In our North American factories, we will continue to manufacture our products to highest standards of hygiene, maintaining strict adherences to our protocols for cleanliness and employee training. This includes increased hygiene practices for all equipment, production rooms and staff.
- We have temporarily suspended all in-store events, as well as public and private parties, to support proactive measures that encourage increased social distancing. Additionally, for the safety of our staff and customers we have temporarily suspended all in-store product demonstrations and product applications. We still encourage you to leverage our passionate employees for expert advice on product usage and application.
- To provide peace of mind to our customers, we have removed all product testers from our shop floors.
- We have halted all work travel across North America and are asking employees to stay close to home and work remotely where possible.
- We have established a cross-functional taskforce that will meet daily to ensure we are quickly adapting to the evolving situation and following the latest guidance from health governing bodies.
- We are committed to consistent communication to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our communities.