Announcing this strategic step for CERES on 29th November 2017, the international advocate for natural and organic products stated that the green cosmetics trend has impacted the “rapidly-developing Asian markets”.
Although on the rise, consumers now expect the brands they select, invest in and are loyal to, along with their corresponding labels, to effectively explore ethical issues associated with both products and ingredients including issues such as sustainability and animal testing.
“As a leading organic certification body in China, CERES (Shanghai) Certification wants to promote the development of natural and organic cosmetics in China and beyond,” said Zong'an Liu, Director of Technical Department at CERES.
“Natrue is delighted to welcome CERES Shanghai to our independent, international network of approved certifiers. We see this move as a positive and mutually beneficial one for both parties, companies and consumers alike,” Liu enthused.
Affirming the organisation's main mission, Liu added: “To protect and promote natural and organic cosmetics the vision of the Natrue label has always been global.”
“Through continuously forging likeminded partnerships like this one, we continue to expand our global vision and uncovered international markets to allow consumers in those regions to have increased access to the high quality and authentic products they expect,” Liu endorsed.
Providing answers to regulations and safety
Located in the heart of the Chinese cosmetics landscape, CERES Shanghai addresses questions relating to regulations, safety and the reliability of natural and organic items, proving their reliability. In its press release, Natrue believes this provides an “additional regional reference point for companies wishing to certify finished products and raw materials”.
“With 11 operational certification bodies, Natrue can count on a broad network which is quite impressive for a single natural and organic cosmetic standard,” stated Francesca Morgante, Label and Communication Manager, at Natrue.
“Our seal is, therefore, a true beacon in the jungle of labels and our independent certification system is a way of ensuring transparency and high quality in certification activities,” Morgante added.
Commenting on the reassurance that Natrue provides consumers, Morgante went on: “No matter which is the certifier chosen by the company, consumers will only need to look for the NATRUE Label on packaging, and they will be guaranteed to purchase an authentic natural and organic cosmetic.”
In addition to CERES in China, the international Natrue standard currently supports Biogro in New Zealand and JAPAL in Japan.
In October 2017, Natrue commented on how the international regulatory process and the ISO 16128 guidelines have “fallen short of current private standard’s requirements, and there is no guarantee that products using it will be consistent with consumer expectations”.
“Without prejudice, Natrue welcomes internationally agreed initiatives aimed at reducing complexity and barriers to trade with an emphasis on combating ‘greenwashing’, which is the reason why the NATRUE Label exists. We believe strongly that consumers must not be misled by products claiming ‘natural’ and organic’ but this requires strict criteria to benchmark them,” stated Dr Mark Smith, Director at Natrue.
With greenwashing misleading consumers, Natrue went on to say that ISO 16128 “fails to combat” this prominent problem and still “fragments the marketplace, and impacts those innovative producers of authentic products”.
“Consumers have grown to expect some kind of verification logo or seal on a product to assure them of its authenticity,” Natrue stated. In a study commissioned by Natrue to GfK, for example, the organisation found that over 60% of consumers are “reassured by the presence of a label on natural and organic cosmetics”.
In future, campaigners for green, natural and organic cosmetics are striving to “maintain trust for future sector growth”, through “a proactive commitment to stop greenwashing and promotion of an environment of transparency and authenticity”.