2021 report of the Association of Perfume Creators
The trade association recently released its 2021 impact report and the organization’s president, Farah Ahmed, told CosmeticsDesign that she outlines what has been achieved for the industry in the past year, both with national and international partners.
While the report outlines a number of specific actions the organization has taken over the past year, Ahmed said there are a few takeaways about what is happening in the fragrance space that care professionals personal can use to understand the segment right now.
One of the major factors that changed the way the Fragrance Creators Association and the fragrance industry in general operate was the outbreak of COVID-19, Ahmed said. Segment leaders had to come together to solve the challenges posed by the pandemic.
The Conservatory of Perfumes
The Fragrance Creators Association created The Fragrance Conservatory, which contains information on a growing number of fragrance ingredients, including their scent, synonymous ingredients and origin in nature, among other things, Ahmed said.
“There was a silver lining in that sense, and we don’t want to lose that,” Ahmad said. “What’s happened with the fragrance industry and with our members is that we’ve come closer to family as an industry, which was really heartwarming.”
Many of the organization’s main goals in 2021 were table issues for trade associations, like trying to keep raw materials and ingredients accessible to industry, working to lower tariffs and monitoring legislative efforts.
Sustainability as the keystone of perfume
Like many industries, Ahmed said many of the innovations happening in fragrances today are all about sustainability. For fragrance, however, it’s not just about positioning, but about the overall success of the segment.
“What many people don’t know is that the success of the fragrance industry relies so heavily on a healthy planet, not just for the obvious sourcing of natural ingredients, but that biodiversity is so important in terms of inspiration for different perfumes”, Ahmad said.
Part of this work for the organization is education about environmental impacts on the global supply chain.
The other part of the trade association’s sustainability work involves advocating for regulation and legislation to help fragrance sustainability, including with the White House National Economic Council, the EPA and the Congressional Caucus for Fragrance.
One of the main efforts is to educate regulators on issues specific to the fragrance world, such as the concept that certain ingredient levels cannot be achieved in fragrances because they would be sensory overwhelming and render the product unusable, a Ahmad said.
Social impact inside and outside the industry
Working on the social impact of the industry is two-fold, Ahmed said. Like many other industries, the organization examines the impact of social issues on the accessibility of the ingredients needed for their product.
The organization also studies where the fragrance industry can improve the quality of life around the world. For example, Ahmed said public toilet usage in India can be low due to bad smells, causing hygiene and health problems from public defecation and excreta outside of a waste system.
“They created an agent that masked odors and put it in public latrines”,Ahmad said. “It encouraged more people to use public toilets. This stuff might not come to mind when people hear the word perfume.
Additionally, the Fragrance Creators Association, along with its members, has thrown its weight behind legislation impacting social issues in the United States, such as the Equality Act, which would codify anti-discrimination protections for Americans. LGBTQ+.
Importance of perfume
Ahmed said one of the main goals of the organization right now is to educate people outside the fragrance world about its importance.
Smell is an important sense for humans and appears more often than people realize, she said. Recent research has begun to investigate the importance of scent in well-being and brain development.
“What we want to do is rather than preach about a product, show the science because…having the ability to access that information is really important,”Ahmad said. “We talk about educating policymakers and regulators, and we invest in educating the public.”
She said fragrance can impact a consumer’s perception of a cosmetic product, determining whether or not something is clean or even how often they use a cleaning product.