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Success for cosmetics industry over Candelilla trade regulations

By Katie Bird , 21-Apr-2010

Related topics: Formulation & Science

Lipstick products ready for retail trade containing candelilla wax no longer need to be accompanied by a certificate that proves their transportation adheres to international regulations.

Native to Mexico, the plant Euphorbia antisyphilitica is listed on the CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) Appendix II. This means that export and re-export of the plant and its derivatives must be accompanied by a certificate which is only issued if the ingredient has been legally and sustainably taken from the wild.

For finished products manufacturers, which often use candelilla wax in lipsticks to improve spreadability and shine, the administrative burden was significant.

At the recent meeting of the Conference of the Parties in Doha, it was decided that finished products ready for retail sales would be exempt from these requirements.

At the recent Union for Ethical BioTrade’s conference ‘Sourcing with Respect’, CosmeticsDesign.com USA spoke to Marceil Yeater, head of legal affairs for the Cites Secretariat, who said this was positive conclusion resulting from successful collaboration between industry players and the secretariat.

In addition, she explained that a number of other species were added to Appendix II which can be found in fragrance products.

Brazilian rosewood (Aniba roseaodora) and Palo Santo (Bulnesia sarmientoi) were also added to the CITES Appendix II. Yeater explained that, like with Candelilla, this means trade in the plant is regulated and assurances need to be made that it does not endanger the species' survival.

Yeater was also keen to point out what the decision does not mean.

“The fact that they have been added to appendix II does not mean that trade in these products should stop,” she said, adding that suppliers should not interpret this decision as meaning they should leave these species alone.