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Essential Oils Testing – Natural vs Synthetic

In an article published recently in Personal Care Europe, Beta Analytic’s marketing specialist Haley Gershon described the value of Carbon-14 testing in the growing essential oils industry as a tool to help stop the spread of synthetic, petrochemical-derived ingredients erroneously labeled as “natural”.

essential oilNatural essential oils are made of highly concentrated plant constituents. However, when aiming for lower production costs, manufacturers may opt to use nature-identical additives containing the same chemical makeup, but from petrochemical sources rather than from plants.

Carbon-14 Analysis of Essential Oils

Identification of adulterated essential oils is possible through the use of analytical techniques such as carbon-14 testing, which indicates whether the origin of an essential oil is natural (biomass) or petrochemical (fossil). Material derived from plant origin contains a known level of the carbon-14 isotope, whereas petrochemical-derived material does not contain any carbon-14.

With the possibility that essential oils containing synthetic constituents are labelled “100% natural,” it is necessary to use carbon-14 analysis to distinguish between pure plant and petrochemical-adulterated essential oils.

More information can be found in the article “Carbon-14 analysis: natural versus synthetic essential oil” published in Personal Care Europe in September 2019.

Rapid Carbon-14 Analysis of Essential Oils

Miami-based Beta Analytic provides rapid, high-quality carbon-14 analysis for various essential oils. For inquiries on rates or turnaround time, please contact the lab using this form or call (+1) 305-662-7760.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, September 25th, 2019 and is filed under Essential Oil Testing, Flavor & Fragrance, Natural Product Testing .