After consultation with IPF Scientific Director Henk Meijerink, MSc and a Committee of well-respected Natural Perfumers, the International Perfume Foundation (IPF) has developed the following position on the use of fragrance Isolates:
While the committee agreed that theoretically it is possible to create a natural isolate, the use of such “natural” isolates creates inherent problems for the inclusion of any isolates in IPF Guidelines and Standards:
A natural isolate is created by processing a compound to the point where there is only one single odor molecule present.
1. The problem with isolates is that it is impossible at this point to determine if the Isolate (now with a single fragrance molecule present) was obtained through a “natural” process or a “synthetic” process, since the molecules in either case would be identical. Once a single odor molecule is created, that molecule is indistinguishable from another single odor molecule created synthetically in a chemical laboratory.
2. An isolate molecule is always obtained by processing and this process can involve some synthetic.
3. The process of creating a fragrance isolate involves separation of a number of compounds until a stage is reached that one desired fragrance molecule dominates a sample with other molecules still present in very small numbers.
On Certification Standards for Natural Perfumers IPF has to take the position of insuring 100% natural at all times, therefore, IPF accepted the recommendation of the IPF Certification Compliance Standards Committee that no isolates, neither natural nor synthetic are acceptable.