Target: Food and Drug Administration
Goal: Demand businesses label all ingredients in fragrances of cleaning supplies and cosmetics.
If you look at the ingredients of most cleaning supplies and cosmetics, you’ll usually see a long list of words you can’t pronounce, and then the word “fragrance.” The chemicals that make up this “fragrance,” however, remain unknown. Perhaps that’s because some of those unnamed ingredients can cause a range of illnesses from headaches to asthma. Tell the Food and Drug Administration that we want to know what chemicals make up the fragrances in the products we use.
On many laundry care products, household cleaners, and cosmetics, the list of ingredients in the product are followed by the word “fragrance,” without any listing of what ingredients make up that fragrance. The FDA originally gave companies permission not to list the fragrance ingredients in order to protect secret recipes. However, companies are also getting away with not having to list synthetic ingredients, preservatives, or substances that may cause allergies. And as with food products, listing the ingredients does not require companies to list the ingredient amounts, therefore the need to keep ingredients from consumers is unnecessary.
About 20 million Americans have asthma. This is three times as many people as 25 years ago. In addition to asthma, allergies have also been steadily increasing in developing countries, especially among children and adolescents. It’s worth considering that this rise may have something to do with the substances with which we allow ourselves to come into contact. With health conditions like asthma and allergies rising, it is vitally important that we are completely informed on what we put on our bodies or spray around our homes. Since fragrances can be made of products that cause allergies and asthma, it’s incomprehensible that the FDA continues to let companies get by without labeling the ingredients in fragrances.
Tell the FDA that we have the right to be informed of which chemicals we allow ourselves to come into contact with. Demand that the organization require companies to list fragrance ingredients.
Dear Food and Drug Administration,
When buying products that will come into contact with our skin or be inhaled into our lungs, we want to know what chemicals are in those products. But since you don’t require companies to list the ingredients that make up the fragrance of cleaning supplies and cosmetics, we remain in the dark. By allowing companies to refrain from disclosing the fragrance ingredients in their products, you are putting the health of your consumers at risk.
With asthma and allergies steadily rising in developing countries, it is imperative that we know which products contain ingredients that could cause these health conditions. Many people don’t want to put synthetic ingredients, preservatives, or allergy-causing substances in their homes or near their skin. Your allowing companies to keep us in the dark about fragrance ingredients is preventing us from making informed decisions that could preserve our health. Please help us stay informed by forcing all cosmetic and cleaning supply manufacturers to list the ingredients contained in fragrances.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: health.howstuffworks.com