SC Johnson has become the first major consumer packaged goods company to disclose the fragrance chemicals used in scented products such as air fresheners, candles and scented oils.
On Monday, SC Johnson published a list on its website of more than 200 ingredients included in Glade products. The bold move could signify the start of a trend in which fragrance companies, operating in the personal care markets as well as household goods, may also be expected to disclose chemical ingredients in their products.
While ingredients in air freshener products and candles such as dyes and waxes are currently listed on packaging, scents are often simply listed as “fragrance” with the chemicals included in the fragrance remaining a mystery to consumers.
Yet SC Johnson has now disclosed that its ‘Aruba wave’ scent, for example, includes the chemicals 2-t-butylcyclohexyl acetate, 2,6-dimethyl-7-octen-2-ol, allyl caproate, benzyl salicylate, ethyl 2,2-dimethyl hydrocinnamyl and ethyl hexanoate.
Consumer are increasingly expressing concern regarding the toxicity and potentially harmful effects of certain chemicals in cosmetics.
SC Johnson’s expanded disclosure gives consumers additional information, enabling them to make informed choices when purchasing products.
“We take great care in making ingredient choices to offer products that are both safe and effective,” said Fisk Johnson, Chairman and CEO of SC Johnson. “Earning consumer trust can only happen when companies are willing to lay it all out there. Expanded fragrance disclosure and ongoing transparency initiatives are vital to building consumer trust and credibility. That is why we continue to advocate for and promote transparency.”
Charities such as Breast Cancer Fund have welcomed the disclosure yet highlight that there is still a significant way to go until companies are fully transparent with customers.
“It’s a good first step but it doesn’t go far enough,” Ms. Nudelman told The New York Times, noting that many of the chemicals her group is concerned about have harmful effects at much lower doses than the levels that SC Johnson is disclosing.
The ingredients disclosure is also limited as it does not apply to all SC Johnson and Glade products.
However, SC Johnson has stated that the Glade products excluded in the disclosure are due to be phased out and that fragrance ingredients contained in products from other brands, such as Pledge, Windex, Shout and Scrubbing Bubbles, will be published soon.