The online petition follows the IFRA's recent press statement saying that Cropwatch's claim that the inclusion of the new Quantitative Risk Assessment (QRA) regulation would alienate smaller businesses due to their lack of funds to implement the systems were incorrect and unfounded.
Cropwatch has retaliated to this statement with the launch of the petition, which encourages people to oppose the 'unnecessary red tape the amendment will create' and the 'other widespread negative implications for all natural aromatics/essential oil users, across a range of professions'.
Tony Burfield of Cropwatch told CosmeticsDesign of his thoughts on the amendment "The amendment is of course backed by the dinosaurs of the aroma industry, such as Givaudin and Clarins, who were in fact instrumental in the initiation of the QRA approach in the first instance. These are the companies who are capable of dealing with the restrictions that the regulation impedes"
"However, it competitively discriminates against the smaller businesses. We are hoping to stop the amendment being passed into European Union Cosmetics law," he said.
At present the petition has just fewer than 500 names on it, mainly consisting of smaller independent fragrance companies who share Cropwatch's view over the uncertainty of their future if they are made to abide by the new regulations.
The petition, hosted on numerous pro natural cosmetic websites, encourages members of the IFRA to leave the organisation in favour of the Cropwatch boycott, which strongly accuses the IFRA of 'creating a hostile environment' for the aroma trade due to the restrictive legislation about to be enforced.
In response, IFRA released a press statement disregarding claims by Cropwatch, detailing why the amendment would in fact benefit all those involved with the aroma industry and how the QRA will in fact be beneficial to fragrance manufacturers.
The IFRA first announced the amendment earlier this month, with scientific director of the association, Matthias Vey, stating that the adoption of new policies such as the new QRA method for fragrance sensitizers, the Compliance Programme, and the potential skin effects of oral care products, were an important part of the revised code of practice.
Vey said that the new policies had the ability to reflect the association's advancement in science, taking into account better concepts for risk assessment and broader exposure for gaining data abroad.
Cropwatch later opposed this movement claiming that the tight QRA regulations discriminate against natural products being used in fragrances and flavours for synthetic ingredients.
The IFRA responded in by stating that natural products must also be regulated heavily as they are not deemed safe based solely on their sources.
According to the IFRA, Rexpan, an independent panel of experts that has no commercial ties to the fragrance industry and consists of toxicologists, pharmacologists, pathologists, environmental scientists and dermatologists, reviews all findings from the Research Institute for Fragrance Materials (RFIM) and bases its knowledge on existing data.
However, press reports state that this is part of the reason why much of the aroma trade is moving out of the heavily legislated Europe, angered that individuals with no experience within the cosmetics industry are able to oversee the way fragrances are created.
The code of practice was first introduced in 1973 by IFRA to properly regulate and provide products that are safe for use by the consumer and for the environment and is said to reflect the current state of development regarding today's scientific and business environment.
It was mooted for revision in October 2006 after the association called for the inclusion of new policies essential for the fragrance industry and to update it with the latest market knowledge.