In-Cosmetics Global live: BASF rethinks digitalization for health, sustainability and transparency boosts
29 Mar 2023 --- BASF Personal Care is presenting its digitalization “Re_think” concept for health, environmental sustainability and supply chain transparency at the ongoing In-Cosmetics Global trade show in Barcelona, Spain (March 28-30).
The European chemical giant’s Surfactant Navigator and SFA Formulator enable it to digitally support customers with sustainable formulations, while its new digital tool enables end-to-end traceability in the argan oil supply chain.
The company recognizes that most sustainable innovations are not “drop-in” solutions and that reformulations are often required. As a result, it is using modeling and simulation-based digital services to provide combinations of sustainable materials that offer performance and sensory advantages over less sustainable benchmarks.
At this year’s trade show, BASF Personal Care is introducing new developments that solidify digitalization as a key pillar in its “Re_think” journey.
Surfactant solutions through digitalization
According to BASF, the global discussion around digitalization and how it can serve as an enabler to develop cosmetic formulations with high-performance and sustainable ingredients is gaining momentum. Customers are constantly looking for innovative, differentiating and sustainable solutions to meet consumer needs.
Modeling and simulation-based digital services are BASF’s answer to key challenges and the latest demands in the personal care industry. The company’s new digital service, Surfactant Navigator, provides customers with suggestions for surfactant mixtures based on systematic experiments and modeling algorithms.
The three main modules, Surfactant Finder, Smart Surfactant Replacement and Smart Surfactant Optimizer, offer formulators comprehensive and easy-to-use search capabilities, including smart filters for physicochemical parameters, naturalness and alternatives to sulfated and EO-based surfactants.
Users can leverage suggested combinations between other surfactants and BASF’s high-performance, natural-based specialty surfactants to achieve even better performance.
Surfactant Navigator not only provides formulators with the desired surfactant solutions that match their priorities but also helps them to replace current surfactant combinations with natural-based alternatives without compromising on performance.
Digital service for rinse-off formulations
The company recognizes that the quest for sustainable alternatives extends to many areas of formulations. With the new digital service SFA Formulator, BASF now presents a way to design liquid rinse-off formulations with sustainable and naturally-derived SFA surfactants.
SFA is versatile and can be used in all types of personal care products, including shampoo and shower gels and liquid or waterless formats.
The performance of SFA is greatly enhanced by combinations with co-surfactants, especially CAPB or APG, where it performs at its best. This tunable surfactant system, SFA/CAPB/APG, leads to a wide range of possibilities for formulations.
The newly developed SFA Formulator is a solution to shorten the time to market for the next generation of rinse-off products such as shampoos, shower gels and liquid soaps.
SFA Formulator is a predictive modeling and optimization service. It was developed based on numerous experimental data collected in BASF's laboratories for the SFA/CAPB/APG surfactant system.
The easy-to-use digital self-service, which is integrated into D’lite, allows real-time correlations between the composition of a formulation and its key properties based on the four easy-to-use ingredients Dehyton SFA, Plantapon SFA, Dehyton PK45 and Plantacare 1200 UP.
SFA Formulator easily, reliably and quickly predicts key liquid formulation properties such as clarity, foaming capacity, viscosity, naturalness and cost indication.
Traceability in argan oil supply
As part of its Responsibly Active program launched in 2022, BASF Personal Care has set ambitious sustainability goals for its botanical supply chains in its active ingredient portfolio. One of them is 100% traceability by 2030.
With a pilot project for argan oil, the company is taking another important step toward achieving this goal with a new digital tool to help monitor local sourcing by collecting detailed batch tracking data on the harvesting of the fruit, the crushing of the nuts and the processing of the oil, thus ensuring full traceability.
The organic argan supply chain has already met high standards in the past and is fair-trade certified. Now, the tool helps facilitate the certification process by providing easily accessible, reliable data on, for example, the contribution of income from argan activities to a fair living wage.
It also benefits BASF’s local partners, highlighting their operational excellence and supporting oil-processing cooperatives in their digital transformation.
“With six different cooperatives and more than 500 women involved in the fair-trade certified supply chain, argan sourcing is one of the most complex in our active ingredient business. Thanks to many years of trusted collaboration with our suppliers, we have now been able to implement this advanced digital tool to ensure the highest possible transparency,” says Marie Cecile Thibault, purchasing manager for Botanical Raw Materials st BASF Beauty Care Solutions France.
In the near future, the data collected will also be made available in real-time to BASF’s customers involved in the argan supply chain to help them achieve their own sustainability goals.
The argan oil supply chain, along with palm and castor oil, is currently featured as best practices for sustainable sourcing at BASF’s Sustainability Pod at In-Cosmetics Global.
Meanwhile at the event, Clariant is showcasing botanical cosmeceuticals for mood support and skin health, and Mibelle Biochemistry is displaying upcycled skin-brain axis solutions for mental health.
Edited by Joshua Poole
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