Dear Reader,

Before closing the year, let’s take a moment to reflect on what came our way:

  • The implementation of the Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability and with it: the starting process for the revision of the two main Regulations for the classification (CLP) and registration & risk management of chemicals (REACH), the kick-off work on the concept for essential use of hazardous chemicals, reflections for a new approach in designing chemicals which are Safe and Sustainable by Design, and the basis for an upcoming initiative on sustainable products, among the others.

  • A European Commission report taking stock of the implementation of the Biocidal Products Regulation

  • Data gathering on non-compliant hand sanitisers finding their way into the European market

  • EU authorities triggering the revision of sector-specific legislation for cosmetics and detergents


We did our fair share of work in anticipation of these EU policy developments including, but not limited to responding to EU consultations on the Sustainable Products initiative, REACH, and CLP; also having a Cefic representative speak on our behalf at the 2021 ChemicalWatch Biocides Symposium.

MCEC did not stop here: we organised a workshop under Chatham House Rules on “Microbial control – is too much precaution a risk?”, in a hybrid format, for the first time since the outbreak of the covid-19 pandemic. The workshop led to the conclusion that collaboration with institutional stakeholders and representatives from the value chain, academia and civil society is needed to accelerate innovations for microbial control.

We are proud of our accomplishments for 2021 and feel ready to take on what comes our way in 2022, still counting on the strong MCEC leadership, following the re-election of the current Chair and Vice-Chair. Meanwhile, we wish you all a happy and healthy holiday season!

José Mosquera

MCEC President, Global Strategy and Growth Leader for IFF’s Microbial Control Business.

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One substance, one assessment: what it means for microbial control

Active ingredients in microbial control are addressed by the Biocidal Products Regulation (BPR) and the Plant Protection Products Regulation (PPPR). These two pieces of legislation often deal with the same substances used in different applications, therefore being assessed by two different agencies. Different approaches used by these agencies may lead to discrepancies and lack of harmonisation within chemicals legislation.

The European Commission introduced the “One Substance, One Assessment” principle to simplify and consolidate the existing legal framework, to avoid overlaps between the work carried out by EU’s agencies and scientific bodies. How can this serve microbial control?

How essential is microbial control for the functioning of society?

With its Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability (CSS), the European Commission aims to phase out the most harmful chemicals for non-essential societal use, in particular in consumer products. The CSS describes essential societal use of chemicals as “a use necessary for health, safety or is critical for the functioning of society and if there are no alternatives that are acceptable from the standpoint of environment and health.” Criteria will be designed in that regard in 2022. Will microbial control solutions meet these criteria? We shared our views in an opinion piece with EURACTIV.

Council note on the status of BPR implementation

Earlier this year, the European Commission published their report on the implementation of the Biocidal Products Regulation (BPR), taking stock of the current situation of the Review Programme.

Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Stella Kyriakides, sent a letter in June calling on Member States to urgently review the situation in their countries and to take the appropriate measures for the implementation of the BPR, which has clearly identified shortcomings. In response to that, 14 Member States acknowledged the importance of concluding the Review Programme and appreciated the initiative of the Commission to contract technical experts to support competent authorities.

This is what was reported in a note from the Environment Council, following the meeting held on October 6th. It is worth noting that, according to the document, several Member States have already taken actions to improve the resource situation of competent authorities, while in others the national fee system has been revised or is under revision.

MCEC presents at the US Household and Commercial Products Association Annual Meeting 2021

MCEC Secretariat attended the Household and Commercial Products Association’s (HCPA) Microbiology Preservation Subcommittee, during their 2021 Annual Meeting, held in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on December 6th. This provided MCEC with an opportunity to showcase ongoing activities and achievements in positioning the organisation as the to-go stakeholder for microbial control advocacy and communication in the European Union.

The outcome of the meeting highlighted important similarities between the commitment of the two groups at the two sides of the Atlantic, despite the differences in the regulatory and legislative frameworks. Understanding the challenges and opportunities for engagement with respective regulators was an important step to share experience and best practices going forward.




The Microbial Control Executive Council, or MCEC, is an initiative of the world’s leading companies developing and supplying microbial control technology and solutions. It was established in 2012 in order to promote the safe and effective use of microbial control technologies, and to create a reference point for stakeholders and the public alike to understand the benefits of microbial control technologies and the steps being taken to ensure the use of more sustainable biocides across all applications.

MCEC member companies, Arxada, BASF, IFF, ICL, LANXESS and Troy Corporation, are committed to the betterment of public health and wellbeing through the advancement of sustainable microbial control technologies.

To learn more, follow us on Twitter, visit our website and our LinkedIn page.

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