The Current Trends in European Fragrance Market and Implications for Essential Oil Manufacturers in India

Perfumes Fragrances in Europe

The majority of the essential oils are used by the food industry in Europe whereas approximately one-third is used for fragrances, cosmetics, and aromatherapy. The European cosmetics market is witnessing growing demand for specific essential oils (as an alternative to synthetic fragrance) in the perfume and personal care industries. European consumers also emphasize high-quality natural products. The imports of essential oil have increased over the years and the trend is likely to continue. Patchouli and Frankincense essential oils are in high demand in European countries. The market offers lucrative opportunities to essential oil suppliers existing in developing countries.

Sweet and bitter orange (HSC code 3301.12), Lemon (HSC code 3301.13), Citrus fruit oils not specified elsewhere (HSC code 3301.19), Peppermint (HSC code 3301.24), other mint oils (HSC code 3301. 25), other essential oils (HSC code 3301.29), Resinoids (HSC code 3301.30) and Oleoresins (HSC code 3301.90) fragrances are used in cosmetic and fragrance industries of Europe.

Europe – A Lucrative Fragrance Market

Europe is considered a robust fragrance market in the world. Followings make it a lucrative market.

  • Europe is the largest cosmetics and personal care market in the world with a valuation of US $ 97 billion in 2019. Whereas European fragrance sales stood at the US $18 billion in 2019.       
  • European perfumes have high demand worldwide, the global luxury perfume market is expected to grow at the compound annual growth rate of 5.3% and reach $17 billion by 2026. High purchasing power and increasing consumer preference for glamour, style, fashion, and fragrances are the major drivers of the market.
  • Artisanal and specific or niche fragrances are trending as they are considered to be of high quality by consumers. They think that these fragrances are derived from the higher concentration of natural extracts. The global natural fragrances market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 5% and reach the US $ 39 billion by 2025.
  • The cosmetic product market is witnessing a growing demand for natural and organic cosmetics for skin care, hair care, and fragrances in Europe, paving way for more usage of natural essential oils.
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The Top European Countries Importing Essential Oils

Germany, Netherlands, France, UK, Spain, and Italy are the largest importers of essential oils in that order. France, Germany, and the UK have the largest cosmetics and fragrances market.

Germany is the top European importer country. It has the largest organic cosmetics market in Europe valued at approximately $1.5 billion in 2018. The industry uses essential oils extensively. The fragrance sale of Germany reached $3 billion in 2019. The country was the third-largest global perfume-exporter of perfumes. The imports of essential oils by Germany have increased over the years in terms of value.

The imports of essential oils by the Netherlands have witnessed a more than 100% increase by volume and more than 200% increase by valuation between 2015 and 2019. There has been a decline in imports from European countries over the years. The current conditions give the developing countries a profitable opportunity to export their produce to the Netherlands. The essential oils with HS Code 330129 hold a 12% share in total imports.

France is the third leading importing country in Europe due to the growing demand for natural fragrances in the French cosmetic market. Approximately 36% of essential oil supplies were imported from other countries and a rise has been noticed in the imports in terms of value and volume. France has a large fragrance industry that imports essential oil and export perfumes substantially. Essential oils with HS code 330129 account for the major portion of imports.

Although there has been a decline in the volume and value of imports of essential oils by Spain, essential oils with HS code 330129 held 44% of the volume and 65% of the total value of essential oil imports. The fragrance industry of Spain is poised to grow at 3.5% per year and demand for natural and organic cosmetics in Spain is also expected to amplify. The growth prospects open up opportunities for essential oil wholesale suppliers.

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The imports of essential oils by the UK have decreased in terms of value and volume for the last few years but the imports from countries other than European countries have increased. The essential oils with HS code 330129 make up for 24% of the volume of imports. Their demand  for personal products is expected to grow further due to growing consumer awareness and rising demand for high-quality natural perfumes and products. Brexit is likely to disrupt the supply chains of essential oils for the UK.

Imports of essential oils by Italy have grown substantially in terms of value and volume for the last five years. Italy has a large organic cosmetics and fragrance market. The variants of essential oils may draw the industrials users towards developing countries.

The Critical Factors Opening Opportunities to Tap European Market

Emphasis on Sustainable Production

The multiple big industrial users in Europe want to source the essential oils from the manufacturers engaged in the sustainable production of essential oils. The Natural essential oil suppliers need to ensure that they have not overharvested or harmed the climate or soil for extracting the oils. The sustainability practices adopted by the essential oil manufacturers along with certifications and labeling may help them tap the demand for essential oils in Europe. Aromaaz International is also in favor of environmental sustainability and has received certifications from different recognized entities for their manufacturing, packaging, and shipping practices.

Inclination Towards Personalized and Specific Fragrances

Personalization of fragrances has become a recent trend among millennials and will continue in the future as young consumers want to wear a unique fragrance. It allows users to connect a scent with their individuality at an emotional level, giving them the power to choose the aroma and control. 

The users are ready to pay higher prices for their customization by associating the fragrance with memory. The perfume manufacturers create scents from alternative ingredients. Personalization also offers opportunities for perfume providers to develop long-lasting & trusting relationships with customers.

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Patchouli, orange, lemon, peppermint, and frankincense are the most sought-after essential oils to create such fragrances. The developing countries have a concentration of essential oil wholesale suppliers of such many oils. Aromaaz International offers all these oils in bulk at competitive rates in the international market.

Demand for Non-Allergic Cosmetics

Essential oils are natural substances subject to allergies. However, some essential oils are safe and non-allergic. The manufacturers of such oils can highlight their constituents and their percentage in composition, get them allergy-certified, and offer the products in the European market. Aromaaz International has a wide range of essential oils and a full-fledged lab that helps identify allergic and non-allergic essential oils. It also provides CoA, GC, and MS documents for the non-allergic content detail of the oils.


A study on natural ingredients for cosmetics, the properties of essential oils, European Allergen legislation and the fragrance companies targeting millennials would throw light on the demand supply gap. Adopting Fairwild sustainability standards, readiness to provide documents, consistency in quality of essential oils would aid the essential oil manufacturers India in tapping the European market.

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