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EPA expands safer fragrance ingredient list

By Michelle Yeomans+

25-Feb-2014
Last updated on 25-Feb-2014 at 17:45 GMT

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has added 50 chemicals, including 40 used in fragrances, to its Safer Chemical Ingredient List (SCIL).

The Agency set up the resource for both manufacturers and consumers seeking more information about chemicals present in cosmetics and what makes safer products.

The SCIL list contains chemicals that meet the criteria of the agency’s 'Safer Product'.

EPA will continue to update the list with chemicals that meet DfE safer ingredient criteria in key classes such as solvents, surfactants and fragrances.

According to an Agency rep Jim Jones, manufacturers can search within each SCIL component class—solvents, fragrances, —to assemble a set of ingredients that satisfies “the performance and customer-appeal characteristics they would like their product to have—including being safer for families and the environment.”

Working with the industry to be greener

The EPA also works closely with cosmetic companies across the U.S. to promote green chemistry and economic opportunities from renewable products.

The Agency created the 'Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award' for brands involved in chemical products or processes that reduce or eliminate the use or generation of hazardous substances.

The certification applies right the way across the life cycle of a product, including its design, manufacture, and use.

A venture like this can help further promote these innovative chemical technologies.

"An effective regulatory review process is critical to commercializing innovative new chemicals that can provide improved products for consumers, new jobs from the emerging renewable chemicals industry and environmental benefits for everyone," the group explains of its efforts.

Brands also willing to invest in the EPA

Back in 2012, the EPA announced it had received $1.2 million in private sector research funding from global cosmetic company L’Oreal in a bid to determine if its chemical toxicity forecaster (ToxCast) could be used in systemic toxicity tests and replace current methods that involve animals.

At the time the Agency used ToxCast to screen chemicals to understand their potential impact on processes in the human body that lead to adverse health effects. 

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