The browser you’re using is no longer supported by our website. Please use Microsoft Edge, Chrome or Firefox for a better browsing experience.

Givaudan’s VAS technology wins best technological breakthrough of the year

01 Dec 2014 · 08:31 CET

Givaudan’s Virtual Aroma Synthesizer (VAS) won “Best Technological Breakthrough of the Year” at the 29th Annual Fragrance Foundation Awards last night at Radio City Music Hall. The FiFis, as they are popularly known, recognizes top achievements in fragrance, and are considered to be the “Oscars of the beauty world.” The VAS is the first of its kind – a computer-based system that perfumers use to create a fragrance in real time with a customer or client according to their exact specifications. This innovation is considered to be revolutionary by the fragrance industry, as evidenced by the award.

The VAS is a computer-controlled vapor phase simulator that enables Givaudan perfumers to explore a vast array of ideas instantaneously. With the VAS, their collaborations result in a fragrance concept and together they can explore unique modifications to bring the fragrance to life, much like a songwriter and lyricist.

Until now creative exploration in perfumery has been more constrained by the capacity of the laboratory to provide samples than it was by inspiration. The perfumer creates an idea as a formula, submits it to the laboratory and receives a sample at some later point in time. Because of this cumbersome process, the millions of ways the ingredients in a formula can be combined cannot be explored. The world’s next breakthrough fragrance may have been missed by not experiencing one unconventional combination. Givaudan’s VAS will change that forever.

“The VAS allows the perfumer to take their inspiration and soar with it anywhere in the world of scents, and it does it in real time,” said master perfumer Rene Morgenthaler, part of the Givaudan perfumery team that helped develop the VAS. “You build it in your mind and using the VAS you can instantly play with it and smell an array of possibilities. ‘What if” is a virtual reality. For example, I can explore what would happen if I increased an ingredient a hundred fold. Variations can be explored within minutes. You sense the impact instantly, the real time feedback puts you in a position that until now, perfumers could only dream about,” explained Morgenthaler.

From the client’s side of the table, the VAS offers tremendous advantage. It is an enormous step in bridging the communication of scent and language. “Imagine how challenging it can be for a client to have a wonderful concept in mind but not be able to communicate its essence, much less the subtleties to their partner in creation, the perfumer. You hear direction like, 'I want something lighter’. Classically I would interpret this in the context of my fragrance. I have a sample made in the lab and some time later, find out that wasn’t what the client meant by ‘lighter’ at all,” said Morgenthaler.

“With the VAS you interpret what you think ‘lighter’ means and you both smell instantly the effect of your modification. The VAS literally obviates the need to have a standardized language of perfumery. It is like being able to communicate by thought waves. In the end, the VAS allows our clients to take an active role in the creation of their fragrance.”

Givaudan combines the rich heritage of fragrance with this innovative, cutting-edge technology, further enforcing the commitment to building true business partnerships with their customers and to “create sensory advantage” for the global marketplace.

Givaudan is a world leader in the flavour and fragrance industry.

For further information please contact
Peter Wullschleger, Givaudan Investor Relations
T +41 22 780 9093