The Irish Atlantic Coastline on the Western edge of Europe. A haven of beauty in land and seascape, remaining unspoilt for thousands of years. That has been the platform for the formation of an ecosystem that is precious and unique and where generations of people have lived in harmony.
It was this environment that the Maher Family and their 13 year old son, Neil, returned from London to live on their ancestors coastal farm in Ballybunion in North Kerry. Despite the total contrast with the life they left behind, Neil quickly settled into their new life. He was in awe of the beauty of the Ballybunion coastline, the people and their way of life.
Living was no longer a rigid unchanging urban clock. Life in his new home revolved around seasons, water, growth and tides. Here was an inter-dependency with nature that both intrigued and stirred a deep-seated passion that had been lying dormant in the young Neil.
With the change in seasons and the coming of Summer, he watched the locals harvest dulse (referred locally as ‘seaweed’) along the North Kerry coastline. He wondered at the diversity of this red algal abundance. Farmers utilised it for fertilising the land, the hospitality sector used it for the world famous Ballybunion seaweed baths, a seasonal tradition that both the locals and visitors the world over partook in for benefits ranging from mere relaxation to alleviating physical ailments ranging from skin ailments to claims that seaweed bathing slowed down the ageing process! However at the time, what intrigued Neil most was the food and nutritional value associated with dulse and other bounties from the coastline.
It was this interest, coupled with his entrepreneurial spirit that motivated him to start his own business. After school and during the weekends, he began a weekly round of villages and towns in North Kerry selling dried dulse and perri winkles.
Within a couple of years, the young Neil Maher became a well-recognised figure – the young kid with the cockney accent calling out “perri winkles seagrass” as he entered various public establishments selling his produce neatly packaged in paper bags including a “small needle” to aid in extracting the perri winkles from their shells!
As Neil grew older, he moved from School to University and studied Science. Eventually his education and career culminated in a Doctorate in Biochemistry. For the next few years, Doctor Neil Maher worked in Montpellier, France, involved in research on Parasitology. However, he never forgot his roots and his love for North Kerry or lost the passion for his childhood interests.
Doctor Neil Maher returned to Ballybunion from Paris in 2005 and has been working as a Cosmetic Chemist since then, researching a unique method called the Eco-C Method™, involving the harvesting of marine plant life and the formulation & manufacture of a 100% natural bodycare product range.
His work has been long and meticulous but his criteria and ethics are uncompromising. ‘100% natural’ means 100% natural and all ingredients are hypoallergenic. Trials on the benefits have been rigorous and honest. Doctor Maher’s bodycare is one of the only 100% natural bodycare ranges available on the market today.