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Annie's Wonderful Work Experience at Nature's Laboratory!

02 July 2024

The whole team at Nature's Laboratory loved hosting Annie for her week's work experience from school. Annie, under the guidance of Dr Bhagyashree and Dr Shankar, undertook many tasks in the laboratory and factory, from learning how to perform quality checks to assisting in the development of new products. It was great to have Annie with us for the week and we hope she will come back to visit us soon. 

Annie explains  "From the 21st to the 24th of May I did my year 10 work experience at Nature’s Laboratory and it was one hundred times better than I ever expected. On Monday, my first day, I was introduced to the whole team who were very kind and welcoming then given a tour of the whole facility. Next, I was taught how to perform quality control checks and gather samples for medicinal herbal materials. I worked on a sports drink product development project with Dr Shankar by very accurately weighing some of the ingredients. It was interesting to see the use of an analytical balance for weighing sub-milligram quantities.

On Tuesday, I began by doing lots of research on HPLC (High Performance Liquid Chromatography), a machine used to identify and quantify components in a known and unknown mixture. Later on, Dr Bhagyashree – who looked after me throughout my time at Nature’s Lab- taught me about the personalised lip balm kits and the role of individual ingredients in the kit. Finally, we prepared another batch of lip balm ingredients to be melted and poured the following day.

On Wednesday, I learned to make handmade lip balm. The ingredients had been melted and combined, I poured the mixture into the tins and produced 71 Gin and Tonic flavoured lip balms onto which I later stuck the labels on both sides. To complete my batch of lip balms I used the vacuum sealer to ensure they were ready to be sold on. Next, Dr Bhagyashree taught me how to pH test a new batch of tinctures to ensure they were within a certain range, as a positive product release and quality test. Once finished, we then began preparing two samples of Propolis from different areas of Turkey for the HPLC machine, which was an incredibly precise and time-consuming job.

On Thursday, Dr Shankar and I did a second trial for the sports drink which resulted in us quadrupling the quantities to see if the ingredients still dissolved despite the increased amount. Once we had finished, Dr Bhagyashree placed the Turkish propolis samples into the HPLC machine which unfortunately stopped working but preparing the samples was a fascinating process in itself.

On my final day, I was taught how to use the capsule filling machine then shown how tinctures are pressed and filtered. For my last few hours, Dr Bhagyashree and I began trialling a new cream formula for another new commission.

I had a fabulous week at Nature’s Laboratory and will be forever grateful to all the amazing people who work there and could not recommend it enough for any other young people looking for a work experience placement."

Photo above: Left to right Dr. Bhagyashree Kamble with Annie.