Issue Date: February 5, 2007
In the story about Clint Brooks and his innovations in flavors and fragrances, author Ivan Amato states, "Designed to stimulate the warm, moist sensory surfaces inside your mouth and nose, the chemical creations of the $18 billion-per-year flavors and fragrances couldn't get more intimate with its ultimate customers—you and me" (C&EN, Oct. 30, 2006, page 32). What could, and perhaps should, have been mentioned is the allergic reactions that increasing numbers of people have to perfumes.
My wife and her two sisters suffer severely from perfume allergies, so much so that it limits their ability to interact socially in large groups. My wife is learning to keep her distance from perfume odors and is very alert to the first sensations of allergic fragrances that affect her. I would like to see the Food & Drug Administration, the flavor and fragrance industry, and whomever else regulates that industry consider regulations that a product be labeled to clearly state that the contents of a given perfume bottle may cause severe allergies to others. I call on the federal government to begin aggressive funding of R&D to attempt to discover why many perfumes induce severe allergic reactions in some people.
Paul R. Loconto
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