Newfoundland Family Find An Ally In Seaweed

By Ben Hamill - September 14 2020
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Newfoundland Family Find An Ally In Seaweed

What had originally started out as no more than a business on the side run by Newfoundland family Terrance (49), Courtney (42), and Phoenix (11) Howell, the family now hails the unlikely answer to their financial worries brought about by the global health crisis.

Since the Howells own a pair of vacation homes, and an arts centre and restaurant run at Grates Cove Studios, theirs were businesses exceptionally hard hit by a significant decline in the typical annual influx of out-of-town visitors.

Little did they realise at the time disaster initially struck, that the solution to their worries quite literally lay in plain sight: seaweed.

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The Answer Was Under Their Feet

Not only is seaweed all over Grate Cove’s shores, but it also happens to be the main ingredient in the Howells’ previously on the side marine-minerals skincare line, 7 Fathoms.

All of which meant that the Howells suddenly found themselves spending a great deal more time together this summer too – time spent slipping into their wetsuits and going on daily outings to harvest oarweed for their skincare products sold by mail order. Oarweed, scientific name laminaria digitata, is a genus of seaweed particularly high in antioxidants, which of course is exactly what makes it so popular an ingredient in anti-aging skin lotions.

The Howells tell of how they discovered for themselves the renewing power of oarweed when 5 years ago they happened upon the special seaweed during a beach stroll, all of which had led them to discover that handling it helped clear up dad Terrance’s skin issues caused by woodworking, not to mention even a bad case of eczema.

One Good Thing Led To Another

Since Terrance and Courtney Howell pre-crisis spent most of their time only barely keeping up with the constant stream of visitors frequenting their restaurant and bed and breakfasts, Courtney says the seaweed business was never purposefully intended to become more than a “side-hustle”.

But all of this changed once a health crisis-turned tourism crisis hit the rocky shores of Grate Cove Newfoundland, says a reflective mom Courtney. Since Phoenix’s schooling had suddenly turned remote, and the family had to find a new way in which to earn an income, the seaweed venture turned out to be the solution making the most sense in terms of combining making a living with overall safety.

And best of all is that instead of focusing only on themselves, the Howells were due to the increased production of skin lotion soon able to hire three of their Newfoundland neighbours and provide a means to a living to them too.

All of which dad Terrance describes to be something he’s going to be a great deal more protective of post-crisis. Helping others and being able to spend more quality time with Phoenix, says Terrance Howell, is a gift.

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