Under Soil Association organic standards, natural preservatives and antibacterial ingredients are encouraged. Their are many natural preservatives like alcohol, honey and sugar, that have been used for centuries.
Plant extracts can also be used, such as cinnamon, rose, cloves, vanilla and calendula. Natural process can be used to prevent the fast spread of bacteria, processes such as heat treatment, removing oxygen through vacuum packing, and ensuring a low water content. Chemical preservative's are very restricted but a few are allowed, as long as they have no known health risks or concerns.
The Soil Association is the UK largest campaigning and certification organisation for organic food, farming and products. They have specific standards for heath and beauty products. These standards were developed in 2002 after three years of development involving industry experts.
These standards are there to provide consumers with products that are as natural as possible, with minimum processing. There are no GM ingredients or petro-chemicals allowed, and products must contain a minimum of 70% organic ingredients (excluding water). Products that are certified by the Soil Association carry the widely recognised Soil Association symbol.