Natural preservatives : What You Need to Know

Natural preservatives are ingredients found in nature, which can prevent premature decay of products without artificial processing or synthesis with other substances.

These substances can safely and effectively replace the controversial synthetic preservatives, such as p-hydroxybenzoate.

There is no federal law on what natural preservatives are. Kim Greenfield, founder of Campo Verde solutions, said that to avoid legal risk, some companies have instead claimed that they “do not use artificial preservatives.”. Greenfield has decades of experience in the organic food industry.

Due to the lack of regulation of the term, assumptions have been made about what natural preservatives are and how they work. For example, some consumers think that vitamin E can be used as a natural preservative. In fact, vitamin E, even in the form of oil, is only used as a supplement and skin treatment.

Food and nutrition in Europe companies clarify all the confusion and help you understand exactly what natural preservatives are.

What are the uses of natural preservatives?

Manufacturers use natural preservatives to extend the shelf life of products, reduce deterioration, and retain odor and taste. After all, goods need to survive in transit, and they may be stored in stores or warehouses for a while before someone buys them.

Natural preservatives are popular in natural brand cosmetics, including cosmetics and moisturizers. These ingredients are also common in storable foods such as peanut butter and jelly.

Most of these formulations need to pass the preservative effect test (PET), also known as the “challenge test”, before they can be consumed. “This process simulates natural pollution by injecting microbes. If the preservative succeeds in removing these microorganisms, the product can be put on the market.

Like synthetic preservatives, natural preservatives also belong to what scientists and professionals usually call “preservative system”. This sentence refers to the three ways of action of preservatives. Together with antibacterial agents, the four methods we listed are as follows:

Antibacterial: inhibit the growth of bacteria, fungi and other microorganisms

Antibacterial: inhibit the growth of mold, yeast and other bacteria

Antioxidant: to delay or stop the oxidation process (usually something that begins to deteriorate due to the loss of electrons)

Act on enzymes: prevent cosmetic aging

Popular natural preservatives

The most common natural preservatives are harmless substances that we are all familiar with:


lemon juice

Grapefruit Seed Extract

rosemary extract


Citric acid (from citrus fruits)

To help you understand why rosemary ingredients are so special, let’s take a closer look at what rosemary extract is and how it protects products. The process starts with the extraction of antioxidants from rosemary leaves by a process called carbon dioxide extraction. As we mentioned when we explained the preservative system, antioxidants can prevent the deterioration of organic matter.

A small amount of oil is produced during the extraction process and can be mixed into the product. Rosemary extract is especially popular in cosmetics.

Natural beauty preservatives

In the field of beauty and cosmetics, natural preservatives are specially used for skin care products, hair care, lipstick, essential oils and so on.

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