Rome, 5th-7th June 2023
Surfactants – High Performance Solutions for a better World
Global warming, Environmental Legislation, COVID-19 – the first part of the 2020s has clearly shown that “business as usual” is not a viable option for the upcoming decades. To an extent global societies will need to adopt new paradigms to avoid irreversible collateral damage. This will involve governments, regulators, citizens and industry and its supply chains. Some commentators think that a new economy with new business models may be required for a better world – a threat to some, an opportunity for others.
With this in mind, what is the specific mission of surfactants and their producers? Surfactants play a significant role for some high-performance solutions that are required to meet the global challenges. For example, surfactants add value by helping to keep the components within a complex product formulation compatible. They also provide performance features in their own right (e. g. cleaning, wetting, foaming, emulsification, etc).
Surfactants are thus one crucial key to providing successful solutions for consumers, e. g. related to cosmetics or household applications, or for professional and industrial uses such as I&I or agrochemicals and many others. Research and investment in several fields are required for surfactants, including lower-carbon solutions, bio-based raw materials and circularity. The challenge will be to identify lower surfactant solutions that can be scaled up to the dimension of current mainstream products, perform well (e. g. clean as well as current products), and are cost effective. Digitalization should help to speed up these activities as COVID-19 has, e. g. with consumers buying more and more products online than off the shelf. COVID-19 has also shown that products for hygiene and sanitation are in huge demand: these often contain surfactants and have been literal life-savers.
An important aspect of our industry organization, CESIO, is to provide knowledge and ensure that the regulations developed are based on facts, good science and recognised testing protocols. As regulations and raw material chains develop, there will be both restrictions and new opportunities opening up. This will affect surfactants as well as biocides, solvents, polymers and other ingredients. The surfactants industry has a tremendous breadth and depth of expertise in bringing ingredients together in advanced formulations and is therefore well positioned to a) help downstream users with these changes, and b) stimulate the development of new business opportunities.
The conference has three clusters with the following topics:
Technical & Applications
- Environmental sustainability and circularity in surfactants
- Detergency, cleaning and sanitation
- Innovation in Household, Personal Care and I&I
- From structure to properties to applications
- Impact of digital, regulation and consumer behaviour
- Selected applications: household, I&I, personal care, agrochemicals, industrial use of surfactants including oil & gas, plastic additives, emulsion polymerization, etc.
Safety & Regulatory Affairs
- Sustainability Policies in USA, Europe and Japan
- REACH and CLP under the EU Chemicals Strategy
- How can the efficiency of sustainability be assessed?
- Relationship between biocides and surfactants
Business & Market Trends
- Legal and technical input into business models for sustainable products
- Global trends: Hygiene & sanitation beyond COVID-19
- Digitalisation and consumer behaviour
- Dinosaur meets Unicorn – what long-established companies can learn from start-ups