The UK Cosmetic, Toiletry and Perfumery Association (CTPA) has launched an online exchange portal to match demands from manufacturers of highly demanded hand sanitisers, handwashes and soaps with suppliers of critical ingredients and components within the country.

The cosmetics and personal care industry has been instrumental in maximizing production of products that are helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19, notably hand sanitisers, handwashes and soaps. However, record demand for these essential products has created supply shortages of the ingredients and other components needed to make them,” explains the trade organisation.

Dubbed CTPA Emergency Response Exchange or CERE, the portal connects suppliers and producers within the UK cosmetics industry and other sectors, such as distillers of pure alcohol. CERE can also be used to help the National Health Service (NHS) and other relevant care services in the UK who urgently need Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), where companies have surplus stocks in business premises that are currently closed or not fully operating.

CTPA Emergency Response Exchange (CERE) connects suppliers and producers...

CTPA Emergency Response Exchange (CERE) connects suppliers and producers within the UK cosmetics industry and other sectors (Photo: © Zigres /

Replicated for the UK from an initiative recently launched by the Canadian association, Cosmetics Alliance Canada, CERE is a three-step online process:

- Step 1: Gather contact information and the manufacturing needs and offers of supply
- Step 2: Match relevant companies with different manufacturing or supply needs
- Step 3: Companies with matched needs can then contact each other

From the very beginning of the epidemic, the cosmetics industry has committed in the fight against the new coronavirus across Europe and globally. Production lines have been reorganised to produce tons of hand sanitizers and other hygiene products, as well as hand creams to help unwanted effects on the skin from frequent hand washing.

These are unparalleled times and I am acutely aware that the NHS, carers and many companies across all business sectors are facing enormous challenges while tackling COVID-19. The cosmetics industry is playing its part by stepping up the production of hand hygiene products, in particular hand sanitisers and gels. The new CTPA Emergency Response Exchange will help boost production of these important products as well as facilitating the supply of badly needed PPE for those in the front line of this unprecedented health emergency,” said Dr Emma Meredith, Director-General of the CTPA.