Economy, Domestic Economy

Organic Cosmetics to Help Counter Smuggling

Organic Cosmetics to Help Counter Smuggling Organic Cosmetics to Help Counter Smuggling

Iran is ranked as the seventh largest consumer of cosmetics in the world. Iranians’ annual spending on the cosmetics is above $2 billion, accounting for nearly 30% of the $7.2 billion cosmetics market in the Middle East.

Over the past years, domestic markets have been flooded with smuggled low-quality cosmetic products from China, Thailand and other countries which do not meet the required standards, thereby posing serious health risks to the consumers.

Concerned with the large-scale cosmetics smuggling and the ensuing health risks, authorities have been encouraging domestic production of natural cosmetic products, termed as ‘organic cosmetics’.

“Unfortunately, the markets are currently inundated with smuggled cosmetic and hygiene products. However, investing in the development of organic cosmetics and creating natural cosmetic brands could help reduce illegal imports,” head of Iran’s Drug and Food Organization, Rasoul Dinarvand was quoted by Ta’adol newspaper as saying last week.

He further noted that investing on the development of such products will not only create large employment opportunities, but will also save the country “as much as $20 billion a year” on illegal imports of cosmetic and hygiene products.

He invited the private sector and civil institutions to participate in production and quality control of organic cosmetic products, noting that the domestically manufactured cosmetic products could meet a considerable share of domestic demand.

 Production vis-à-vis Imports

Secretary of the Association of Cosmetics Toiletries and Perfumery Importers, Hamid Moghimi, believes increasing domestic production of cosmetic and hygiene products will also benefit the authorized importers in the long run by leading to reduced interest among consumers in counterfeit products of inferior quality.

“At the moment, 30-40% of the existing cosmetic products, 50-60% of the hygienic products and 80-90% of detergents in the market are produced domestically,” he said, noting that contrary to prevailing assumptions, what damages the domestic market most is not the officially-authorized imports but the illegal smuggling of such products.

  Organic Cream Production

An Iranian cosmetic company recently launched the first production line for organic cream.  At the moment, the company only produces organic cream, but it plans to produce other organic products in the near future.

The company’s chairman of the board, Ali Naghib says the selling price of the organic cream is about one fifth of the foreign equivalent which is sold at around 10,000,000 rials ($300 at market exchange rate) in the domestic market.

“We expect a good sale in the domestic market. We also plan to produce other organic products and start exporting in the future,” he said, adding that Turkey is the only country in the region with the technical knowhow to produce organic cosmetic products.

“Turkey currently produces about 800 different organic cosmetic products, while Europe has been active in the field for over 40 years,” he added.