Spotlight falls on ingredient sustainability

Germany-based Symrise has launched its first environmentally friendly functional ingredient. The company has developed Ecocert-certified natural alpha-bisabolol, which is marketed as SymRelief for use in cosmetic products designed to alleviate skin irritation.

Natural alpha-bisabolol is obtained from the oil of the candeia plant, which grows in the south eastern and central western regions of Brazil. In a bid to protect the rainforest, where the plant grows naturally, Symrise has pledged to take candeia from farmed plants only.

The company is also giving financial backing to a research project at Universidade Federal de Lavras designed to discover the ideal conditions for cultivating the native candeia plant.

"Sustainability has been a major priority at Symrise for years, and we live by it and implement it consistently," said Helmut Frieden, corporate vice president, product & safety, health and environmental compliance at Symrise. "Conserving natural resources and being economical in our use of energy and water are all part of our sustainability strategy."

Elsewhere, France's Naturex has been named as one of the world's 20 "sustainable stocks" by green investment newsletter Progressive Investor, which is published by

A group of judges, said to be among the most respected green stock analysts in the world, selected the 20 companies on the list because they boasted high environmental standards, a history of profitability and potential for continued growth.

"Naturex was selected for this year's list because it produces products from plant extracts, replacing chemical ingredients," said Rona Fried, CEO of "Besides being plant-based, its flavourings, colourings, antioxidants and preservatives are GMO-free and not tested on animals, providing a much healthier and environmentally responsible alternative for the food industry. Such ingredients are found throughout the food industry, therefore Naturex has the potential to make an important contribution on a large scale."

Last year Naturex established a sustainability project designed boost living standards in the communities where the company sources its ingredients. The Naturex Foundation helps provide education, medicine and other necessities to people living in the areas where Naturex derives its plant raw materials.

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