Rigour and common sense

Jaume riba
Regulatory Affairs Manager
Jaume Riba

 

I started working at Ventós in the spring of 2006. A single interview was enough for them to hire me as the person in charge of the position that in those days was called ‘Customer Service’.

Soon after I started, I found myself immersed in an addictive maelstrom of products with unpronounceable names, suppliers from exotic countries, and customers with endless questions about complex legislation.

At that time, the 42nd Amendment of the IFRA had been published, although the majority of customers did not ask us for IFRA certificates. In Europe we still operated with ‘Directives’ instead of ‘Regulations’. The REACH Regulation had been drafted, but we still looked at it with incredulity: How were we going to put those 500 pages into practice? Nearly everyone understood the safety data sheets, the hazard pictograms were orange and there were ‘substances’ and ‘preparations’. The ‘mixes’ were reserved for the bartender.

Over the last 15 years, it is undeniable that the regulatory landscape of our industry has changed, in the same way as everything else. And not only has the scenario changed, the very function of the Regulatory Departments in companies has also changed.

Many new product projects have been born as the result of a new legal restriction and no new product or process is launched without having studied its regulatory risks.

The boom in products obtained by bioprocessing (such as our Bionats range) is a good example of this. Just like our Safrole-free cinnamon leaves, which we were the first to launch on the market back in 2010.

We have also seen a cultural change: nowadays very few people argue about the importance and the need to work to make sure the health of people and the planet is protected.

The discrepancies do not lie in WHAT triggers regulation but in HOW it is regulated. In this regard, in forthcoming years we will have to pay close attention to how the ambitious goals of the EU’s Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability*, which will have a major impact on our products, are implemented in law.

I always explain that one of the qualities needed to excel in Regulatory work is creativity. We have had to incorporate so many complex regulations (sometimes they even contradict each other) that their implementation does not only require a deep knowledge of the subject but also creative solutions.

Nowadays very few people argue about the importance and the need to work to make sure the health of people and the planet is protected.

We’ll need creativity, rigour and common sense to face a future in which legislation will only become stricter. Product sustainability requirements, REACH regulations that are multiplying, etc., at Ventós we are ready for the challenge.

ERNESTO VENTÓS S. A. Crta. Reial 120B 08960 Sant Just Desvern - Barcelona - Spain
Tel: +34 93 470 62 10  E-mail: info@ventos.com

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