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It's Official: Fragrance Industry Associations Reorganize, Globally

Posted: April 14, 2010

As previously reported,  fragrance industry associations worldwide have agreed to reorganize into four regional bodies—North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia-Pacific—under the International Fragrance Association (IFRA) banner. These regional entities will have voting rights (based on market share) as association members of the  IFRA board. The remaining votes will be distributed among the IFRA "regular members": Firmenich, Givaudan, IFF, Robertet, Symrise and Takasago International. Assuming they meet predetermined criteria, other fragrance companies may also join as regular members.

“The fragrance industry is fully committed to funding and coordinating the scientific and association work to represent all aspects of our industry no matter where they are in the world,” said Jean-Pierre Houri, IFRA director general. “We are being called upon to do more and more research and issues that arise in one region tend to become global issues rapidly. This new structure and branding will help us respond more timely and cost effectively and also to be more proactive in explaining the benefits our industry brings to people’s everyday lives.”

The official announcement below:

The new organizational structure is designed to be fully inclusive of the IFRA membership, currently covering approximately 90% of the global volume of fragrance compounds. The objective is to represent 100% of the industry worldwide.

This will be made easier by the new funding structure because national associations wishing to join will no longer have to pay dues to IFRA. The key obligation for membership will be to comply with the IFRA Code of Practice and in particular the IFRA Standards. The current regular members will now only fund national associations through IFRA creating a central funding mechanism for projects with global implications. The newly formed regional bodies will continue to manage regional and national issues.

Globally the fragrance industry invests approximately US$14 million per year across its research and association network. This realignment will concentrate resources enabling a more effective response to the growing societal, regulatory and scientific issues being faced by the modern fragrance industry.

As part of the restructuring the General Assembly of the European Flavor & Fragrance Association (EFFA) recently approved the creation of an IFRA European Affairs Department for fragrances, to be called IFRA Europe, leaving EFFA to concentrate exclusively on flavors. The composition of IFRA Europe’s new European Regional Committee for fragrance has now been agreed. This Committee will oversee strategy and implementation for IFRA Europe and will be chaired by Robert Edelman from International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF). The Committee, which will cover Europe, Africa and the Middle East will be made up of a representative from each of the eight national European associations [Germany (DVRH), France (PRODAROM), Italy (Federchimica Assospecifici), Netherlands (NEA), Spain (AEFAA), Switzerland (SFFIA), Turkey (AREP) and UK (BFA)] as well as representatives from the current six IFRA Regular Members.

The eight European national associations have now joined IFRA as Association Members, after formal ratification by the IFRA General Assembly on February the 24th. Companies, other than the current six Regular Members, will continue to pay dues directly to their national associations but under the new structure the Associations will no longer pay dues directly to IFRA.

Meanwhile the Fragrance Materials Association of the United States, better known as FMA, has formally agreed via its General Assembly to begin doing business as IFRA North America. William Troy from Firmenich was elected President of the North American Association. IFRA North America will strengthen its ties to IFRA while continuing to operate as a trade association made up of companies engaged in the manufacture and sale of fragrances and fragrance ingredients in the US and Canada, as well as representatives of the current six IFRA Regular Members.

The next phase of the reorganization will be for the Latin American and Asia-Pacific members to formally establish their two Regional Committees completing the global branding of the regional bodies under the IFRA name and logo. “The different names and logos of our associations across the world create a very confusing picture for people outside the industry,” said Jean-Pierre Houri, IFRA Director General. “We want people to know what IFRA stands for, what it represents; our safety program, the IFRA Code of Practice, IFRA Standards, the Compliance Program, our commitment to ensuring the safe enjoyment of fragrances. Rebranding our global association network under the IFRA name and logo will help us communicate more consistently the core values of IFRA worldwide.”

The fragrance industry is comprised of companies of all sizes and all industry interests will continue to be fairly represented. The reorganization has been developed with a conscious effort to be fully representative of the industry and ensure that the financial burdens are both proportionate and realistic so that all sectors of the fragrance industry benefit.