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Jo Fairley

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One of the UK’s leading entrepreneurs with outstanding practical marketing skills and vision, Jo Fairley is best known as co-founder of internationally successful Green & Black’s organic chocolate, now approaching sales of £100 million worldwide.
 
She has a talent for sharing her experiences and knowledge in an insightful way and she has an exceptional understanding of brand creation and development.
 
Jo left school at 16 with minimum qualifications to train as a secretary. Her careers teacher didn’t think she’d be a success. But she became the UK’s youngest-ever magazine editor, aged just 23, and used all her journalistic and PR insights to help build Green & Black’s without spending a single penny on advertising, until the brand was eight years old. She didn’t take a salary during that time because the business needed all the support she could give.
 
Widely recognised and highly regarded as a journalist, Jo is Contributing Editor to Sainsbury’s Magazine and The Mail on Sunday’s YOU Magazine where she writes about beauty and organic living.  She contributes to a wide range of other publications including Red, InStyle and The Daily Mail.
Jo has written over a dozen books – including the best-selling Beauty Bible series, with Sarah Stacey, and The Ultimate Natural Beauty Book (Kyle Cathie).
 
Jo has been “green” since 1972. A friend inspired her with the gift of a book called The Shopper’s Guide to Saving The Planet and she got into big trouble for putting bricks in the school’s loo cisterns!
 
In the late 1980s, Jo had an environment column on the Women’s pages of The Times – Ecosphere – and co-presented a BSkyB TV show called Go For Green with David Bellamy. 
 
She juggled creating Green & Black’s (with her husband, Craig Sams) with her writing career. She was Chair of the Soil Association’s Health Products Standards Committee, helping to set the standards for organic and natural cosmetics in the UK and is also a “Matron” of the Women’s Environmental Network.
 
Jo and Craig are often described as “Britain’s coolest organic couple” and have been voted this by Coolbrands.
 
They own and run Judges, an organic bakery and 100% organic food store, in their home town of Hastings, East Sussex. They opened The Wellington Centre, an integrated health clinic, in the town. They share a passion for sustainable living and wellbeing.
 
In June 2014, Jo launched The Perfume Society to bring together everyone who loves fragrance and perfume.