Developments in the cosmetics industry bring to light news that the European Union believes its consumers must be privy to the content information of each and every fragrance. Why? To protect allergy sufferers. So the EU is now endorsing a proposal to force producers to make the contents known.
Although allergy sufferers are probably putting their tissues down as they read this, others are not too pleased saying they will fight this new proposal. French producers of perfume say the decision to force them to reveal the exact contents of their fragrances has a nasty whiff and will only be detrimental to the industry in the long run. Specifically, it will allow counterfeiters to produce like scents, thereby putting a major dent to their earnings. The producers are backed by France’s union of producers of aromatic products, Prodarom. According to the union’s leader, Han Paul Bodifee, calling for the contents to be revealed is not feasible because the producers work with over 100 different elements to create a fragrance. The EU says more than 26 substances are currently used that may be problematic for allergy sufferers. Of the 26, 16 are natural substances, like lemon, orange and lavender. The producers though say the levels used are not enough to trigger an allergic reaction. Producers are in a Catch-22, it seems. The EU, under its Heritage 2 programme, urges all producers to work with natural substances rather than synthetic ones. According to Bodifee, industry experts are determined to test several “supposed” allergens before actually deciding to comply with the EU’s policy. Hopefully this issue will not become a big stink. (664)