Objectives Of The ATC
The success and popularity of aromatherapy worldwide over the past 25 years has encouraged thousands of new suppliers of essential oils and aromatherapy products to start up in the retail business to take advantage of the current consumer demand. Following the early success of specialist aromatherapy companies, supermarkets, cosmetic companies, high street retailers and home start-ups everywhere have all jumped on the bandwagon offering their own ranges of aromatherapy products.
Essential oils are now widely available under various forms of labelling and packaging, sometimes with insufficient regard for safety. Many are of poor quality, some are totally synthetic, and others are bulked out with both cheaper oils and synthetics. In some cases, essential oils have been diluted in a carrier oil and then promoted and sold as pure essential oils.
All of this has meant that the most serious challenge to aromatherapy comes not in the area of its professional practice, but from the suppliers of poor quality, misrepresented and irresponsibly marketed aromatherapy products. These were the issues that led to the formation of the ATC in 1993, and they are still the same concerns that we have today.
To address these issues and remain focused, we refer to the comprehensive list of objectives that were drawn up at the formation of the ATC;
- To act as the lead body representing the interests of manufacturers and suppliers of essential oils and aromatherapy products.
- To establish guidelines for safety, labelling and packaging for the aromatherapy trade.
- To establish rules or guidelines for, and monitor, the advertising of aromatherapy products and essential oils in accordance with the law.
- To promote the responsible use of aromatherapy products.
- To initiate, support or sponsor research into all and any branches of knowledge which are pertinent and helpful to the continued free availablility of essential oils and aromatherapy products.
- To publish a register of the names and contact details of the current membership.
No other aromatherapy trade association has ever attempted to do what the ATC set out to achieve in terms of self-regulation, due to the huge complexity created by ever-changing legislation and the costs incurred in implementing this. The ATC currently represents a substantial proportion of the aromatherapy sector, and it is democratically governed by an elected Board of Directors made up of representatives from both large and small companies, to ensure a wide cross-section of interests.
Having established its position as the UK authoritative body for the aromatherapy essential oil industry both at home and abroad, the ATC is committed to promoting high standards in the representation of essential oils and aromatherapy products and its future work will continue to address these issues.