The Research Institute for Fragrance Materials (RIFM) was formed in 1966 as a nonprofit member-supported organization to ensure the safe use of fragrance ingredients by consumers. RIFM gathers and analyzes scientific data, engages in testing and evaluation, distributes information, and maintains open communication with all related official international agencies.
RIFM maintains the most comprehensive online database of fragrance materials in the world, containing more than 70,000 references and over 140,000 human health and environmental studies on 6000+ materials. The database is available to members and to others by annual subscription. Data is culled from RIFM-sponsored studies, member-sponsored studies, government reports, and current literature.
The amount and type of data for each material depend on the number of studies and papers conducted and/or published for each material.
The Fragrance Material Safety Assessment
RIFM leads the continued safe usage and sound environmental stewardship of fragrance materials through its Human Health Science (HHS) and Environmental Programs. The HHS Program evaluates available data and sponsors studies for relevant toxicological endpoints for local and systemic effects, including:
• Repeated dose toxicity
• Reproductive & developmental toxicity
• Skin sensitization
• Local respiratory toxicity
The Environmental Program sponsors testing and academic research on the fate and effects of fragrance materials in water, soil, sediments, and air, working closely with international research organizations to assess the behavior and risk of chemicals in the environment.
RIFM is compiling the findings of these programs, along with other relevant data, into Safety Assessments for each material currently in use by the fragrance industry. In addition to exposure, usage, and risk safety data, more general information about the material is also included, such as the material’s physical and organoleptic properties, its CAS Registration Number, synonyms, and other useful data.
In an effort to increase transparency and encourage uniformity, RIFM has partnered with scientific research publication leader Elsevier on our official Food and Chemical Toxicology Fragrance Material Safety Assessment Center, a resource hub providing open access to RIFM’s peer-reviewed Safety Assessments and related papers and research.
The RIFM Safety Assessments are written according the guidelines outlined in the Criteria for the Research Institute for Fragrance Materials (the “Criteria Document”) and are intended as dossiers that include a number of compiled studies on the fragrance ingredients used in commerce; as such, they deviate somewhat from a more standard scientific paper. RIFM and Elsevier have collaborated on a template for these Assessments that organizes the data so that is easy to understand and to find in multiple Assessments…