FRAGRANCES, IFRA CODE OF PRACTICE AND THE NEW AMENDMENT
Fragrances are complex mixtures of aromatic substances of natural and/or synthetic origin that are added to cosmetics and personal care products to impart a pleasant and distinctive odour, mask the inherent odour of some ingredients and/or enhance the user experience of the product. However, some fragrance ingredients may have the potential to cause allergic contact skin reactions (like dermal sensitization).
It is possible to analyse these substances using a methodology called Quantitative Risk Assessment (QRA) to determine safe use levels of fragrance ingredients in a variety of consumer product types. Organizations such as the International Fragrance Association (IFRA) and the Research Institute for Fragrance Materials (RIFM) use QRA to conduct safety assessments. The International Fragrance Association (IFRA) was founded in 1973 and represents the interests of the fragrance industry worldwide. The IFRA Code of Practice is essentially the “global fragrance industry’s commitment to promoting the safe use of fragrance for everyone’s enjoyment”. Fragrance compliance means following the rules of the IFRA Code of Practice and the IFRA Standards (see previous post).
IFRA Code of Practice includes the manufacture and handling of all fragrance materials, for all types of applications. IFRA Standards form the basis for the globally accepted and recognized risk management system for the safe use of fragrance ingredients and are part of the IFRA Code of Practice. These Standards limit or ban the usage of certain fragrance materials. IFRA gathers information regarding the safety of individual fragrance ingredients and reviews that information to determine their safety under expected conditions of product use. The conclusions of the IFRA safety reviews are published in the IFRA Code of Practice which provides critical guidance to fragrance formulators and cosmetic products manufacturers. New scientific developments about analysed substances often justify amendments to the Code and Standards.
On June 30 this year (2021), the notification of the 50th amendment to the IFRA Standards was issued. According to the notification, there is only one update to the Standards and one new prohibited substance (Mintlacton – CAS No. 13341-72-5). All other elements of the 49th Amendment addressing fragrance materials remain unchanged and in place. Timelines for implementation of the prohibition of use of Mintlacton were set as follows:
- For new creations – 2 months after the date of the notification letter;
- For existing creations – 13 months after the date of the notification letter.
The timelines set only apply to the supply of the fragrance mixtures, not to finished products.
Fragrance manufacturers and cosmetic companies have the responsibility to ensure that the fragrances used are safe and compliant with the IFRA Code of Practice and Standards. If you need further information or support on this subject, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 30 November 2009 on cosmetic products.
- The International Fragrance Association (IFRA) – Notification of the 50th Amendment to the IFRA Standards. June 30, 2021.
- The International Fragrance Association (IFRA) – Guidance for the use of IFRA Standards, 2019