Cosmetics and personal care products to first receive the NPA natural standard for cosmetics and personal care products back in October 2008 included offerings from Burt’s Bees and Aubrey Organics.
Just over a year after the first products were certified to the standard, the NPA has announced it will be working with the European natural products trade association and standard holder, NaTrue, on an equivalency agreement.
Brussels-based NaTrue offers a three tier system so products can be certified as natural (one star), natural with organic ingredients (two stars) and organic (three stars).
Once in place, the equivalency agreement put forward by the two organizations will mean that products already certified under either the NPA or NaTrue standard would be recognized by each body.
“On a practical level, products that meet the NPA standard will not need to repeat the full certification process for the NaTrue label, and vice versa,” explained NPA’s president of regulatory and scientific affairs Daniel Fabricant.
Co-operation rather than competition
The agreement is expected to be in effect by the summer of 2010, and for Julie Tyrrell, general secretary of NaTrue, the agreement is a logical step towards co-operation.
“It is only logical that comparable standards co-operate instead of competing against each other. With the mutual recognition we offer, label users have easy access to the most important markets worldwide,” she said.
This is not the first agreement of its kind NaTrue has been developing in the US.
NSF/ANSI Standard 305 is a standard for personal care products containing organic ingredients, and the first products to gain the standard were being showcased last week at the Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim, California.
An equivalency agreement between the NSF standard, certified to by Quality Assurance International, and NaTrue’s standard is now in place, so products with NSF/ANSI 305 in the US can simultaneously gain NaTrue certification in Europe.