Calling all Regulatory Consultants and formulating chemists – this is an important topic of discussion and think that your feedback would help others exploring plant extracts as serums in their ranges - our thoughts on the correct ingredient list of a single plant extract sold as a finished product serum. What would be acceptable under the Australian labelling laws, and how transparent of the composition breakdown are you required to be?
Glycerol and water be included in their ingredient list - YOUR THOUGHTS?
As a result of recent court orders Biologi was ordered to correct their ingredient list so customers know exactly what they are paying for.
We would love to hear from Regulatory Consultants and Formulating Chemists.
What are your thoughts on transparent product ingredients list?
As brands are looking to minimise ingredient lists etc, the question of how you breakdown the composition of a single plant extract bottled as a serum should be done – call all …. we’d love to get your thoughts? It is a question we get asked frequently.
Scenario: Biologi Bf Restore Face & Body Serum
Public Ingredients listed on the Biologi website and their stockists and packaging: 99.8% Citrus Australisica (Finger Lime) Fruit Extract, 0.2% Sodium Benzoate
Do you think the glycerin and water should be included in the ingredient list?
We regularly advocate to emerging brands to work with a Regulatory consultant to be up to date with the latest consumer laws in labelling and other compliances for labelling and compliance, to be up to date with the latest compliances, and while this is not our field of expertise, we do know that extracts require a solvent and in our belief our clients need full disclosure of what the composition break including the solvents are.
Based on the Professor Fitzgerald Expert report filed in Federal court, and admitted to by Biologi, and the other Macdougald parties, shows the composition breakdown is:
"The independent expert evidence of Melissa Fitzgerald B.Sc(Hons).,Ph.D Professor, Food Science and Technology, University of Queensland which was not disputed by Macdougald, Plant Extracts or Biologi and accepted by the Court in full, show that each of the Bf and Bk contain "
There seems to be so much confusion on what the brand Biologi serums are required to disclose in their ingredients lists.
"Statements that the Court Orders declare are false and can no longer be made
Examples of false and misleading statements that the Court has permanently restrained Macdougald and Biologi from making that its skincare products are pure plant:
- Biologi Serums are 100% active;
- The Luminosity Face Serum (Davidson Plum), Hydration Body Serum (Finger Lime) and Rejuvenation Eye Serum (Kakadu Plum) are 100 percent organic plant serums…”
- You won’t find one additive, any fragrances, perservatives or even water;
- 100% active single ingredient;
- As the world’s first single plant ingredient skincare range – packed with vitamin C; and
- No additives, fragrances, or even water, just pure plant extracts."
Excerpt from Dundas Lawyer find in Article Reference  below.
The cosmetic industry and the media are discussing what these court orders and corrective action notices that Biologi and Plant Extracts are required to publish and the corrections to the misstatements they have been ordered to make has the industry in confusion which appears to be coming Biologi and Plant Extracts.
The cosmetic industry is a buzz with the court orders and corrective action notices Biologi and Plant Extracts are required to publish. Many are asking what this means to our industry. Biologi and Plant Extracts have posted explanations to the corrective action orders as their “answers” which are further mis-statements, and appear to be adding to further confusion.
Annexure F – Biologi made false or misleading claims that its products contain only one ingredient, contain only pure plant, do not contain any additives and are not diluted, when that was untrue, and its products were of a certain standard, quality, value, grade or composition.
Answer: Yes, early in our journey our former marketing team adopted wording that reflected our great excitement about our products, but which was open to misinterpretation.
Our ‘single ingredient, pure plant’ representation was centred on our philosophy of only using plant extract and nothing else. These extracts do contain other naturally-derived ingredients that we use to unlock the plant extracts using our methodology. We do not add or change the extracts produced after the completed extraction process in any way except adding 0.2% Sodium Benzoate which acts as a preservative for the natural extracts.
Thank you Biologi for confirming there are other ingredients in your serums, however your ingredient list on your website, your stockist and our packaging do not reflect this.
Full Judgement of the Federal Court and the complete list of corrective actions:
Recent media coverage about this Court decision against Ross Macdougald, Biologi & Plant Extracts:
- "BioLIEgi: Unpacking the recent Biologi court findings and what it means for the cosmetics industry." By Jennifer Rudd, Cosmetic Compliance Expert Consultant., 15 November 2023.
- Cosmetic Fraud (R. Macdougald, Plant Extracts, Biologi) Unveiled | Daily Straits | 14.11.2023
- "Byron cosmetics baron found to be spruiking fake ingredient" - Byron News, 13 November 2023.
- "Entrepreneur proves ex-boyfriend faked 'natural' cosmetics range." by Aaron Patrick, Australian Financial Review, 9 November 2023.
Other relevant links:
- Federal Court Ordered Corrective Actions against Biologi - https://biologi.com.au/
- Federal Court Ordered Corrective Actions against Plant Extracts - https://plantextracts.com.au/
-  Natural Supply Co website promoting the Bk Serum, with the Beauty Short List Awards Editors choice logo accessed on 1 December.
-  Paragraph 10 of the Judgement - https://www.judgments.fedcourt.gov.au/judgments/Judgments/fca/single/2023/2023fca1265 page 12 of the Expert Report of Professor Melissa Fitzgerald says that the Biologi Serums were on average 83% glycerol, 23% water, a suspected colourant and sodium benzoate, so they cannot be “Pure Plant”,
-  The Facialist website accessed at https://thefacialist.co.nz/collections/biologi on 28 November 2023.
-  Biologi’s Bf & Bk serums contain no Vitamin C – Court Orders prove it! by Malcom Burrows, Dundas Lawyers 30 November 2023.
-  Biologi Court Ordered Corrective Actions Published on their Website.
- Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) - Schedule 2
- Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth)
- Competition and Consumer Regulations 2010 (Cth)
Related articles published by NATIVE EXTRACTS:
- Biologi Court Order: Unveiling the truth behind misleading claims in the skincare industry, by Lyndall Murray 16 November 2023.
- Cosmetic Industry mislead and deceived: Ross Macdougald, ingredient manufacturer Plant Extracts and skincare brand Biologi ordered to publish corrective actions, by Lyndall Murray 16 November 2023.
- Radio Interview ABC Mid North Coast | By Bruce Mackenzie, 16 November 2023
Other Related Articles by Malcom Burrows, Dundas Lawyers:
- Biologi's Bf & Bk serums contain NO vitamin-C Court Orders prove it! LinkedIn Post by Malcom Burrows, Principal Dundas Lawyers published 1 December.
Skincare brand Biologi breached the Australian Consumer Law – ordered to publish 5 corrective notices by Malcom Burrows, Dundas Lawyers published 10 November 2023