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Plant biotechnology in cosmetics: Sederma plant cell culture test tube with plant growing out the top with clouds background

Plant biotechnology in cosmetics

 The use of plant biotechnology in cosmetics is becoming a valid alternative to produce safe, sustainable and effective active ingredients for skin care.

As a leader in cosmetic active ingredient manufacturing, one of our main concerns is sustainability. As such, Sederma has chosen to develop plant biotechnology to produce molecules of interest in quantities without causing any damage to the environment.

In July 2012 Croda acquired the Istituto di Ricerche Biotecnologiche (IRB), a forerunner in the development of plant cell culture actives for personal care applications. Sederma is now also offering approx fifteen active ingredients issue from biotechnology with guaranteed efficacy, reproducibility and absolute sustainability., answering many customer's needs including; anti-ageing, environmental protection, radiance, seboregulation, skin tone uniformity and eye care.

After 33 years of work on biotechnology and more than 18 years on plant biotechnology in particular, Sederma’s expertise and the progress made in the field offer unlimited potential to produce molecules of interest.


Plant biotechnology in cosmetics: What does it mean at Sederma?

Plant Cell Culture (PCC)

At Sederma, plant biotechnology in cosmetics refers to the plant cell culture, an eco-sustainable process to develop and produce active cosmetic ingredients with substantiated efficacy and guaranteed reproducibility while significantly limiting our impact on environment.

The first generation allowed to obtain biomass in quantity by stimulating dedifferentiated cells in a favorable environment. It was a mixt of primary and secondary metabolisms non-titrated and with no reproducticibility from one batch to another.


At Sederma, our team developed specific protocols to stimulate the production of molecules of interest for cosmetic applications in an optimal and reproducible way. By mimicking natural conditions, the second generation have given us access to more efficient and valuable molecules.


Today with the arrival of the 3rd generation, we push back the field of possibilities. We allow a gene to express itself by lifting an inhibition to obtain a specialised and directed metabolism that we could not find in nature (epigenetics or biotransformation as appropriate).


To know more about our specific protocols to stimulate the production of molecules of interest, watch the video!

Plant biotechnology in cosmetics explained

Plant biotechnology in cosmetics: high performance and sustainable benefits



  • Avoids intensive cultivation and exploitation of fragilesoils

  • Allows a drastic reduction in water consumptioncompared to a conventional cultivation method

  • Confined environment without pollutants: pesticide-free, GMO-free, solvent-free (only water)

  • Biodiversity preservation: only one sampling

  • Participation in the reintroduction of endangered species: we can reproduce an entire plant from a sample kept in our library



  • Preservative free

  • Ingredient readily biodegradable




  • Full traceability: raw material obtained in thelaboratory, only one sampling perfectly identified

  • Natural ingredients

  • Optimal active concentration and guaranteed reproducibility



  • Natural origin content = 100 %  according to ISO16128

  • ERI 360 label – SILVER LABEL

  • COSMOS approved

Safety and Quality


  • Plant cell culture in our laboratories:Strong management of safety at work (ISO 45001)

  • No solvent

  • No use of fields intended for food

Biotechnology: personal care market report

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A case study around Plant Cell Culture

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