AddEssens is joining the InnCoCells research project to develop sustainable production systems for plant-derived cosmetic ingredients. InnCoCells is an EU-funded Horizon 2020 project developing safe and sustainable plant derived cosmetic ingredients with scientifically proven effects.

AddEssens wants to focus on extracting high-quality components from herbs such as oregano, lemon balm, hemp and black cumin. Herbs that are not yet sufficiently researched for their potential to enrich natural cosmetics. It also wants to further expand its knowledge for the valorisation of the residual flows from red fruit processing. This is an important by-product from the food industry that is the basic raw material for our existing product portfolio with applications in the feed additives and nutraceuticals.

Kris Schatteman General Manager of AddEssens, part of Innovad Group, comments: “For AddEssens,  the collaboration with important research institutions and international players is of exceptional importance to continue to play a role in the challenge for a sustainable, economically viable future. For AddEssens, the European dimension and a broad network are priorities for accelerated knowledge building.”

For the next four years, 17 partners representing 11 countries in Europe will be working together to develop sustainable production systems for plant-derived cosmetic ingredients. The research is funded by the European Commission with a budget of €7.9 million and is coordinated by the VTT (Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd).

The project is exploring a stakeholder-led approach to ensure that new cosmetic ingredients are suitable for the market and appeal to today’s increasingly quality-conscious and environmentally aware consumers.

The main goal of the project is to develop sustainable natural cosmetic ingredients from plants using innovative production processes based on plant cell cultures and plants grown in the greenhouse, field or aeroponic facilities, as well as agricultural waste streams. Plants that are currently in danger of overharvesting will be cultivated in a sustainable and cost-effective manner to ensure that the new ingredients pose no risk to biodiversity or environmental health,” says Dr Kirsi-Marja Oksman, the coordinator of the project from the VTT.

One of the fundamental principles of the InnCoCells approach is to extensively validate the biological activity of all the ingredients developed in the project, thanks to the participation of partners with a wide range of cell-based assays. Plant extracts and natural products with the most promising activities and environmentally friendly production processes will be advanced to testing in human volunteers. This means that none of the products will be tested on animals, nor will they contain any animal ingredients.

AddEssens sees their participation in the project as essential to furthering the understanding of how natural ingredients can interact with important metabolic pathways, offer new bioactives, utilize undervalued sustainable resources and scaling those to commercially viable alternatives. Working together with 16 other partners representing knowledge leaders, commercial market understanding and application expertise ensures rapid development and relevance of the AddEssens offering for the global cosmetics industry.

The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no 101000373. This funding will help to bring the revolutionary InnCoCells approach in cosmetics research to the forefront of the cosmetics industry in Europe.

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