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New organic beauty standard

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New organic logo

The new Australian Certified Organic seal of approval will help shoppers identify beauty and personal care products containing between 70 and 95 per cent organic ingredients.

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A new Australian Certified Organic beauty label has been launched to help shoppers confidently make eco friendly choices when it comes to make-up and other personal care products.

The new logo, administered by the Biological Farmers of Australia (BFA), will be used on cosmetic products containing more than 70 per cent but less than 95 per cent organic ingredients, giving authenticity to the often-seen claim "made with certified organic ingredients".

Until now, only products containing 95 per cent organic ingredients were able to be classified as Australian Certified Organic (ACO) under the BFA's stringent standards. However, in the beauty world it can be difficult for products to meet this high content standard - meaning shoppers have not had the benefit of knowing if products containing less than this percentage were ideal choices that legitimately contained organic ingredients.

The new logo, pictured above right, will provide an indication of products that contain between 70 and 95 per cent organic content (with the exact organic percentage clearly being stated), and will confirm that the remaining ingredients are all natural and also comply with BFA standards.

Akiko Nicholls, Managing Director of ACO, said that the Australian Organic Standard for cosmetics was one of the few practical cosmetic standards in the world - one which is very close to organic food standards. "Some overseas standards allow products to contain as little as 20 per cent organic ingredients," she said.

As well as being able to look for the original ACO label on products containing 95 per cent and above organic ingredients and the new 70-95 per cent logo, eco-aware shoppers can also look for the 'BFA Approved' product logo, she said, which states that a product has been registered and approved by the BFA, but is not as a whole certified organic.

This logo is used for completely natural cosmetics that do not contain harmful chemicals or preservatives, but are unable to meet the organic standard for other reasons - such as is the case for some mineral-based products.

"Minerals are not cultivated in soil so cannot be classified as 'organic' according to standards," Nicholls explained. "But for consumers seeking naturally-derived mineral-based cosmetics there are products endorsed by the BFA which carry the 'BFA Approved Product' logo."

The first lot of products to carry the new 'Made with organic ingredients' logo have recently arrived on the shelves.