The two parties have been in talks but an agreement will only be signed pending approval from the Natural Products Association (NPA) board of directors in June or July, according to Natrue general secretary Julie Tyrrell.
An agreement would mean that products complying with the Natrue label or the NPA standard will be mutually recognised so manufacturers do not have to go through the full certification process again when they cross the Atlantic with their products.
Natrue has already signed an equivalency agreement with a US certifier this year. In February, the natural cosmetics lobby group signed a mutual recognition agreement with Quality Assurance International (QAI), which is behind the NSF standard.
Growing international presence
The preliminary agreement with NPA, announced at the Natural Beauty Summit America in New York earlier this month, promises to extend the reach of the Natrue standard outside Europe.
“With Natrue already in a similar agreement with NSF, the Natrue standard is fast developing an international presence,” said Amarjit Sahota, the director of Organic Monitor, which organizes the Natural Beauty Summit with Beyond Beauty Paris.
The Natrue standard was launched in September last year and so far 120 products have been certified and several hundred other products are in the process of being certified.
An agreement with NPA would also extend the presence of NPA’s natural standard, which entered the cosmetics market last year with a new natural seal.
Leading natural brands support new NPA seal
So far Aubrey Organics, Burt’s Bees and JR Watkins Apothecary have met the NPA criteria and are now entitled to bear the new seal on their products.
With the support of these companies, Sahota said the NPA is one of the front runners in the US certification battle. Burt’s Bees has invested $1m to promote the NPA standard and the body is set to have a presence in Europe.
This article was modified on 25 May to correct factual errors.