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AFRICA FOCUS


field due to South Africa being a rather small sized cosmetic player compared to other countries. Also, most manufacturers want cosmetic scientists with at least a few years lab experience, specifically in cosmetic manufacturing and not just a theoretical science diploma or degree in chemistry or food science. The challenge for the


Statfold 2ChAd 21.qxp_Layout 1 02/06/2021 12:09 Page 1


more experienced cosmetic scientist is that there is not a lot of R&D work being executed, especially at the multinationals. This is mainly due to the fact that most multinationals in SA have their product development decisions managed in another country, so new formulations, technologies and research is conducted at the head office country and project ideas, formulations etc are then ‘trickled down’ or filtered to SA. There is some new, innovative work being executed in SA, but not as much compared to other countries. Also, salaries for cosmetic scientists are one of the lower salaries in SA. The scientists often move out of these typical jobs and enter into the sales arena or some other arena. This is a great pity.


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RENÉ SPADA: The cosmetic industry in South Africa is market driven. Marketing normally gives the R&D


team a brief, which they will use to develop new formulations. The term ‘new’ is also relative, as all the obvious innovations


have already been discovered and new ‘innovation’ describes more the marketing story e.g. naturality, organic, free from, told during a new launch. There is sometimes also an unrealistic cost expectation vs. effectiveness of a new formulation. This is a fine line which has to be negotiated by the cosmetic chemist.


PC: Has the pandemic had a major impact over the last year? JK: Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the South African economy was suffering, with a high level of unemployment and unskilled workers in the country. The COVID-19 pandemic only served to exacerbate these factors and there has been a noticeable decline in innovation and new technology in the cosmetic industry in South Africa, in the past 12 months. The COVID-19 pandemic has also had a significant and deleterious impact on the supply chain that brings cosmetic raw materials from the major producers in Europe and the US into the country, resulting in a significant decline in the development of new products and new launches into the marketplace. BG: COVID has had an astronomical impact on new product development in all categories of personal care/cosmetic manufacturing. We are especially hard-hit in the colour cosmetics category. It has so much impacted this category that major local colour cosmetic companies are investing in importing colour cosmetics from


www.personalcaremagazine.com


July 2021 PERSONAL CARE


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