Givaudan is one of the most respected companies in the fragrance and flavour industry. Its rich heritage dates back to 1796, making it the first company to establish itself as a creator of tastes and scents. In 2008, the company achieved sales of CHF 4,087 million, with a work force of 8772 employees and subsidiaries in 46 countries.
Givaudan’s wide range of expertise is categorized under the following innovation pillars: Sensory Intelligence, Sensory Creation, Sensory Technology, and Sensory Science. By further developing these capabilities, Givaudan can accomplish its goal of becoming the Essential Source of Sensory Innovation.
Fragrance research’s primary objective is to develop new molecules and unique naturals to enrich the perfumer’s palette. Additional focus is on the continuous development of new delivery systems, the better understanding of smell, the counteraction of malodour and the search for new accords found in nature through the ScentTrek expeditions. A total of thirty-four patent applications were filed in various fragrance research domains.
In 2005, four new proprietary molecules, developed by a Givaudan research centre in Zurich, were introduced to the perfumers’ palette: Pomarose, a very rich fruity note, reminiscent of rose and apple pie, perfectly meets the "gourmand" trend towards comforting smells stemming from the world of food. Cosmone, with a rich and intense musky note gives an elegant touch to all kinds of accords. This biodegradable molecule, in addition to Nirvanolide, enlarges Givaudan’s range of environmentally friendly macrocyclic musks. Serenolide is an elegant white musk with sweet fruity connotations providing warm and soft velvety notes that blend well with all kinds of trendy fruity accords. Safraleine surprises with its spicy saffron freshness. This new note perfectly fits into the fine fragrance’s increasing demand for spicy smells.
To further strengthen its research capabilities for new molecules, Givaudan opened a supplementary research laboratory in Shanghai. This new facility will leverage the opportunity of Givaudan’s current partnership with Chinese universities,while taking advantage of the increasingly strong chemistry expertise in China. Granuscent, a new, patented delivery system,was commercialised with the launch of a major product in the USA. A novel controlled release system for liquid products, based on a liquid crystal technology, successfully passed the milestone for industrial scale-up. Furthermore, pressure activated microcapsules were added to the range of Givaudan’s delivery systems. This technology was successfully validated in consumer tests and has now entered the scale-up phase. It is designed for laundry applications where the molecules anchor to textiles during the washing process and release their odour when the textiles experience physical friction later on.
Givaudan continued to make progress on its studies to counteract malodour. Thanks to the expertise in fragrance precursors and the increased understanding in the formation of axilla malodour, further compounds could be developed. Upon action of the bacterial enzymes, these compounds release a fragrance molecule and, in addition, reduce the formation of the malodourants. The publication "Isolation of a bacterial enzyme releasing axillary malodor and its use as a screening target for novel deodorant formulations" of the Givaudan scientist Andreas Natsch et al. in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science (IJCS) was voted the best IJCS paper in 2005.
Givaudan’s fragrance research remains strongly committed to retaining its leadership in the understanding of smell. The company pursues its own research activities and closely monitors industrial and academic research. Significant progress in the characterisation of olfactory receptors and their use as biosensors to identify novel odorant lead structures has been made.
Givaudan’s renowned ScentTrek® activities were also pursued in 2005. Ten reconstitutions were made of endangered flowers from the Western and Northern Cape in South Africa. Among them is a highly attractive ionone-floral scent. As Death Valley (California, USA) experienced a century spring with unusual rich blossom activity, Givaudan conducted a specific ScentTrek to collect the smell of some rarely flourishing endemic plants. The library of reconstituted natural scents has now grown to over 400 items. It has proven to be an irreplaceable source of inspiration for the creation of all types of fragrances.