US NGOs are calling on French cosmetics giant L’Oreal to set a timeline and clarify the scope of its plan to disclose more fragrance ingredients in its products.
The company announced its disclosure plan in an interview with Chemical Watch last week. A spokesperson said the company has a "future goal of communicating to a larger extent the composition of our perfumes in all our products".
It did not reveal further details or timing, but said any plan would be done "in a way that meets the expectations of our consumers and ensures their safety, while at the same time fully respecting the know-how of our perfume creators and protecting us from the major risks of fine fragrance counterfeiting."
Dev Gowda, director of the US Public Interest Research Group (US PIRG) campaign for toxic-free products, welcomed L’Oreal’s move but called on the company to "provide a clear timeline and a commitment that this increase in fragrance transparency will be across all product lines."
Last year, US PIRG and coalition partners delivered over 150,000 petition signatures to L'Oréal’s US headquarters, calling on the company to disclose fragrance ingredients.
"L'Oréal's announcement is a clear sign that the industry is listening to the public, and policy makers need to take note and pass laws to mandate fragrance disclosure for all consumer products. L'Oréal's competitors Unilever USA and Procter & Gamble both made fragrance disclosure commitments over the past year," added Mr Gowda.
Sarada Tangirala, director of corporate accountability at US NGO Women Voices for the Earth (WVE), told Chemical Watch that she hoped L’Oréal’s upcoming disclosure announcement would match those of Procter and Gamble and Unilever, both of which have committed to revealing all fragrance ingredients present at 0.01% of product volume.
"L’Oreal should respond to consumer demand by at least meeting this transparency standard, with the goal of reaching 100% disclosure. It is clear that there are no more excuses for personal care companies to keep fragrance ingredient information from consumers," she said.
L’Oreal’s goal is important, said US PIRG's Mr Gowda, because "some chemicals used in fragrance have been linked to cancer. But because companies aren’t required to disclose fragrance ingredients, consumers have no way of knowing if the products they apply to their bodies are putting their health at risk," he said.
L'Oreal did not respond to a request for comment by the time of publishing.