The Reckless Self-Interest of the Fragrance Industry
July 22, 2010
The Cancer Prevention Coalition has warned that people must be protected from exposure to fragrance ingredients that may cause cancer or fetal, hormonal or reproductive toxicity. But federal agencies are not regulating these ingredients, leaving the public at risk.
Perfumes and fragrances are the single largest category of cosmetic and personal care products. They are also extensively used in a wide range of household cleaning products.
According to World Wire:
"The FDA has direct authority under the terms of the 1938 Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act to regulate toxic ingredients in cosmetics and personal care products. However, seven decades later, it has still failed to do so. Similarly, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has also still failed to regulate these toxic ingredients in household cleaning products."
The policies and practices of the cosmetics and personal care products industries are determined by its International Fragrance Association (IFRA). The primary objective of IFRA is to protect the self-regulatory practices and policies of the industry -- including maintaining the "trade secret" status of perfume and fragrance ingredients, and preventing labeling and safety initiatives.