About SV Labs

A Family Business With
A Dynamic History
Born from a sustainable vision, the SV Labs story is rich with extraordinary circumstances and entrepreneurial spirit.

SV Labs is proud to co-manufacture a wide variety of traditional and natural bath, body and skincare products at our two facilities in Watsonville, California. We started out as a classic family business, but our story is full of twists and turns, proving that things don’t always turn out the way you expect. However, if you’re inventive, hard-working and open to opportunities, sometimes what transpires is even better!

SV Labs – Timeline

1970

California Cornucopia opened

Alida Stevens’ (then Smith) first retail store in Santa Cruz.
Cornucopia sold bath, body, hair and home fragrance products by the ounce, scoop and slice.

1970–78 Expanded to multiple stores

For the next 8 years, California Cornucopia opened a series of new stores.

1978

Smith & Vandiver,
new company founded

Alida joined forces with Lynn Vandiver, and the duo launched their bulk concept, Back To Basics.

1983

Manufacturing began in Watsonville

With the growth of Back to Basics, the company moved to one of five buildings in Watsonville. The town was a perfect fit.

As the company grew, it became apparent that we needed to control our own manufacturing, and we moved to the first of five buildings in Watsonville. Watsonville was so welcoming, said Alida.

1985

Alida became sole owner

The manufacturing and wholesaling business grew, which was not the direction Lynn had first envisioned.

So, in 1985, she sold her share of the company to Alida.

1986

Jeff joined the business

Alida met Jeff Slaboden at a gift show and they became partners, in life, love and business.

Jeff brought engineering, technology and packaging skills that created an ever expanding, state-of-the art manufacturing facility. We used to laugh that I could design and formulate the first 3 product samples, and it was then Jeff’s job to make the next million pieces, said Alida.

1989

Loma Prieta earthquake

The epicenter of the earthquake was only 6 miles away and it struck in the period of peak holiday shipping. The morning after the quake, Jeff started digging out and rebuilding the business, one shovel at a time.

Beginnings of The Botanicals

Alida began learning about aromatherapy and started developing The Botanicals, one of the first wellness brands based in aromatherapy. She used essential oils to create dual purpose products that would e.g., moisturize and reduce stress. The Botanicals was sold in premium perfumeries and department stores.

I started thinking that everyone needs to reduce stress, balance their energy or find a little help getting a good night’s sleep, and with aromatherapy you can do this without the possible side effects from medications. Alida said.

1991

Aromatherapaes developed for mass market

A focused and simplified collection of aromatherapy products was developed under the brand name, Aromatherapaes.

1995

Good Clean Fun!

A child-focused brand, Good Clean Fun, was born. The line contained simple, fun and clean products for children, including our longest running item, Dino Fizz.

One of the company’s touchstones has always been to make quality products available to as many users as possible, and this market was the pathway, said Alida

1998

Fizzmos introduced

SV introduced its first effervescent product, Fizzmos. SV Labs has since become the leader in this technology and is the largest domestic producer of Bath Bombs.

2007

Organic and Natural Product Association Certifications

Getting Organically Certified as well as registered with the NPA was fully in line with SV Labs’ product history and original vision.

2014

FDA Over the Counter Registration

SV Labs pursued FDA OTC Registration and were approved to run Sunscreens, Anti-Acne Products, Hand Sanitizers and more OTC Personal care.

2016

Beach Street Facility opened

Due to the popularity of SV’s Effervescent Category a second production facility was opened in Watsonville (75,000 square feet) producing Bath Bombs, Shower Tablets, Salt and Powders.

2020

SV and the pandemic

During the critical first months of the Global Pandemic SV Labs shifted operations from bath & body to Hand Sanitizers and Cleansers. Supplies of Hand Sanitizer were also donated to local communities

2021

SFEP acquisition

SV Labs was acquired by SFEP in early 2021.
The company continues to pursue its original vision of making clean, natural beauty and personal care products in Watsonville, California.

SV Labs

Smith and Vandiver Laboratory is now SV LABS!

The Name You Know:
For over 40 years Smith & Vandiver’s name has been synonymous with high quality products and an exceptional customer experience. Our DNA has always been impeccable and prompt service, innovation, and speed to market. Although our name is changing to SV Labs, none of what you know and love about us will.

The Logo Story:
Our logo and color palette have been refreshed to reflect our new journey while maintaining the connection to our heritage and effervescent beginnings.