BDIH is the globally recognised acronym for Bundesverband Deutscher Industrie-und Handelsunternehmen, one of the globe’s oldest and most rigorous certifiers of natural cosmetic products. Originating in Germany in 1986, the BDIH now represents over 440 unique producers and distributors of food supplements, cosmetics, nutritional foods and over-the-counter medication.
In order to meet BDIH requirements, brands must work carefully to transform raw material into cosmetic products with minimal chemical processing, and with the least impact on the natural world as possible. This includes the protection of endangered or indigenous species.
BDIH is specific in their guidelines for the use of animal products, ensuring that brands are held accountable for abuse that occurs at any stage in their manufacturing and distribution process. By doing so, they eliminate the possibility of brands using “third party” excuses for animal testing.
BDIH guidelines include, but are not limited to, the following:
- The use of organic-synthetic dyes, synthetic fragrances, ethoxylated raw materials, silicones, paraffins and other petroleum products are forbidden.
- Disinfection of organic raw materials and completed cosmetic products using ionizing radiation is forbidden.
- Where allowable preservatives are used, the terminology “preserved with [name of preservative]” must be stated. Allowable preservatives include benzoic acid and its salts, salicylic acid and its salts, sorbic acid and its salts, and benzyl alcohol.
- Raw materials obtained from plants should be from controlled biological cultivation or wild collection.
- Substances produced by animals are allowed, eg. milk, honey, etc.
- Raw material obtained from dead vertebrates are forbidden, eg. emu oil, animal fats, collagen etc.
- It is forbidden to conduct animal testing at any point in the manufacturing or development process; or to commission another party to conduct animal testing.