Distributions... and men?

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Distributions... and men?

Post  Thornapple on Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:56 pm

Ive been doing activist work with reusables, namely cups but a lot of pad companies have been generous with their donations as well and was wondering, how do you get a cup distributed when you're not a business? FemmeCup sent me this inquiry along with their very generous sample for the university.
I would really like to see this happen. I downloaded a letter from the GladRags website to send in to Shoppers possibly, not sure if they would consider it. They do sell Insteads!

Also, how do women feel about men being involved with the activism? My fiancé has coupons and even a FemmeCup sample that he carries with him which I admit, must look sort of funny and surprise a lot of women. He's successfully gotten four or so women interested with his little sample cup. Its also great to know that they are so welcoming of the choices at their disposal, but then who wouldn't be? Even if it is from a man.

My roommate took some brochures and coupons to give to his girlfriend as well and we donated a FemmeCup for her to try out. I wish it was a Lunette though as it's a bit friendlier looking.


Last edited by Thornapple on Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:58 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : edit)

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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Melissa569 on Wed Oct 06, 2010 5:23 pm

I find that most women are quite greatful when a man is secure enough to to get involved. My own husbands sees my business, and he's proud of me. Last night, he said "I have to learn everything about these cup things, so I can help you market them. I know lots of people, so I can spread the word too. But if they ask me about them, I need to know! Its not just your business, its OUR business.".

As for getting cups distributed... That's tricky, even if you are a business. Well, at least in the USA it is. In this country, you are allowed to purchase any menstrual cup you want to, as long as its for your own personal use (or a personal gift to a family member or close friend). But you cannot SELL or distribute cups from inside the USA, unless they are FDA approved. So physical stores and online stores that are based inside the USA are limited to selling Keeper, Divacup, and Lunette-- those are the only ones with FDA approval.

See, the part about approval that's so hard, is that it requires an extremely LARGE fee to be paid. Most companies cannot affored the fee. Not only does the silicone material have to be FDA approved, but the cup design itself does too. As do any colors used. So it can be an extremely expensive process.

But at least for us USA women, we can latch onto the brands that are FDA approved, and really spread the word about them! And, if we continue to spread the word about all brands, and cups in general, the companies will make mroe money, and mroe of them will be able to afford to apply for FDA approval. By getting involved, we can help make changes Smile

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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Thornapple on Wed Oct 06, 2010 5:49 pm

Actually that reminds me. In Canada it didn't used to matter, we would accept things approved by other health organisations such as the FDA but I put an inquiry in to the Keeper company for samples and they told me that they couldn't distribute in Canada due to the country no longer accepting the FDA as legitimate and the Keeper hadn't yet been Health Canada approved. However, DivaCup told me they weren't FDA approved and couldn't distribute even brochures. I'm not sure why because they are Health Canada approved. I think it was just an excuse on their part.
I've been considering trying to get an online business started for ecofriendly sexual health and hygiene and I would love to be a distributor for FemmeCup. I guess I'll have to look into what the Health Canada literature on cups is.
Maybe I'll contact Health Canada about it.

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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Melissa569 on Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:50 pm

Really, Diva said they weren't FDA approved? I wonder why? I know both Diva and Keeper are FDA approved. They have both told me so and its on both of their websites:

Diva: http://www.divacup.com/en/home/quality/

Keeper: http://www.keeper.com/ (about halfway down the page)

Also, the woman who started Diva used to be a distributor for the Keeper company. I'm not sure if there are any hard feelings betweent he 2 companies abotu that, I hope not Smile


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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Thornapple on Thu Oct 07, 2010 8:58 am

I was confused. Canada doesn't accept FDA approval anymore so even if they are FDA approved it doesn't matter. So far I've only had a positive response from Lunette and FemmeCup.

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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Melissa569 on Thu Oct 07, 2010 9:04 pm

Ooooooh, ok, I was just speaking in terms of sellers who live in the USA. If you live in Canada, then the rules are probably different.

Sounds like you are getting a wonderful start on your distribution business Smile If you build a website, let me know so I can post it in the "Where to buy" forum.
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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  ankhst on Mon Oct 11, 2010 4:18 am

I had 2 men help on my stands at the 3 expos I did this month, and my partner actively promotes cups too. Ryan had 1 woman say that she was pleased there was a guy there because she wouldn't be comfortable talking to a woman about it. On the other hand, I also had a few women who seemed a bit put off by him being there.

Bjorn mostly had women being smart "which one do you have?" etc. The joke was on them though, he has a medium purple ballstem Meluna (in his survival/first aid kit).
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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Thornapple on Mon Oct 11, 2010 11:08 am

Haha that's funny. Kevin has a FemmeCup he keeps in his desk in his honours room office. Personally I'm glad when I see men there. At least for me to have Kev helping out I hope it sends out the message that "men are feminists too" or some such.

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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Melissa569 on Mon Oct 11, 2010 8:20 pm

My husband is quite helpful and actively involved with my cup venture. But we also had a male room mate a year ago named Kevin. He learned all about cups because of me, and came to the conclusion it was better than disposables. Now that he has his own place, he tells his girlfriend and any other female friends they have about them. Some are interested and he points them to me Smile
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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Feminine Wear on Tue Oct 12, 2010 5:06 am

My 20 year old son keeps asking me for more leaflets Very Happy
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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  Melissa569 on Wed Oct 13, 2010 8:39 am

Teresa-- That's great! He sounds like a really helpful guy, you raised him well Smile
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Re: Distributions... and men?

Post  BaliGold36 on Wed Jul 04, 2012 9:44 pm

@Thornapple--I started laughing when you mentioned that Canada no longer accepts the FDA's opinions as legitimate. I'm a bioethics minor and recently researched and wrote a paper on the whole rBST and Monsanto scandal. I, as an American no longer see the FDA as a legitimate resource. They've approved of all these pharmaceuticals we later find aren't very good for us or the environment. Also, they've approved of disposables that are bleached with all of those chemicals... they are a joke. No

I think it's great that men get involved--I mean, they have to watch how they get involved (just as women do.) There is a certain line you have to be weary of crossing so you don't embarrass people or turn your audience away from appearing awkward.

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