Initially stemming from Europe and North America, consumer demand for natural and organic products has spread to every continent. The highest growth in the last decade has been in Asia, notes Ecovia Intelligence in the second edition of their report on The Global Market for Natural & Organic Personal Care Products [1].

Asia and China are growing in importance

Many Asian brands are launching natural and organic products to meet growing consumer appetite for ‘clean beauty’ products. China is now the largest market in Asia for this segment, in spite of it being boycotted by many ethical brands, due to the almost compulsory need for animal tests to import cosmetic products in the country.

North America and Europe impacted by the Covid-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the North American market the most, finds Ecovia Intelligence. Emergency measures introduced during lockdowns has led to the temporary closure of department stores, beauty retailers, as well as salons and spas. Such outlets generate over a third of natural and organic personal care product sales in the US and Canada. However, Natural food shops like Whole Foods Market and Natural Grocers generate most sales.

The European market has also been adversely affected by the pandemic. Although many retailers and professional outlets have been temporarily closed during the pandemic, there has been an increase from specialist retailers, drugstores and pharmacies, and online retailers. The largest market remains Germany where natural and organic products now have 10 percent market share.

Adoption rates of standards are on the rise

Ecovia Intelligence finds the adoption rate of standards varies between regions. There are now over 30 standards for natural and organic personal care products. The highest number, as well as adoption rates, is in Europe. “Over 70% of natural and organic personal care products are certified in Germany and France. COSMOS and Natrue are the most popular standards,” says the market research firm.

However, the adoption rates of standards are increasing in almost every region as they provide assurance to consumers that products do not contain contentious chemicals. In North America, sustainability schemes like Non-GMO Project are also gaining popularity.