The world smells good. Thanks in part to Symrise. The company offers around 3,000 fragrances, which manufacturers of perfumes, cosmetics, detergents and cleaners use in thousands upon thousands of products. They range from delicate floral nuances that make perfumes extraordinary to more prominent notes that give bathroom cleaners a kick – from everyday fragrances that can be found in just about any soap to special compositions that Symrise produces exclusively for selected fragrance brands. The portfolio is extensive and continues to grow. For many reasons: Consumers are always looking for new experiences and perfumers are very creative when it comes to developing newfragrances. And the topic of environmental protection becomes of more and more importance. Scent molecules should be biodegradable, as cleaner and shower gel residues find their way into groundwater via waste water. And regulations are very stringent when it comes to our health, as they should be.
Another aspect is sustainability in the use of raw materials. It’s increasingly important to obtain basic materials from natural sources, but not at the expense of food production. The byproducts of food production often offer an alternative. Symrise also uses renewable raw materials. The results speak for themselves: 25 % of materials now come from these sources. The company also utilizes green chemistry to make processes more sustainable. Catalyses, for example, significantly reduce the amount of energy required for production, while solvents are used very rarely or not at all. The process of turning the raw material into a product is also better.
So, Symrise developers who also work intensively with external researchers in innovation projects find themselves in a complicated situation: They need to fulfill the requirements brought to them by legislators, environmental organizations, customers and end consumers. At the same time, products always need to be better and more effective, which is why Symrise employs more than 1,600 people around the world in research and development. The interdisciplinary and global team of developers, application technologists, perfumers, production and regulation experts experiment with several hundred substances each year. One to three of these make it to the market – a pretty good success rate when you consider the many parameters and complicated procedures that lead up to a product release.