Legal Regulation of Odours


The paper presents the legal and self-regulatory regulation of odours in three areas: Environment, Food, and Fragrances. It is based on EU legislation, Slovenian national legislation, and examples of sensory marketing with odours as described in the scientific and professional literature. After noise, odour pollution is the second most common cause of environmental complaints at the European and global levels, accounting for more than 30% of environmental complaints. Frequent exposure to intense odours can lead to headaches, poor concentration, stress, and respiratory problems. However, odour pollution has been consistently ignored in environmental regulations, leaving citizens unprotected and leading to frequent environmental disputes in affected communities. The legislation also regulates odours as they relate to specific foods, products, or technological processes (e.g., traditional and other foods, alcoholic and other beverages, tobacco, new plant varieties, toys, landfills, hydroelectric plant operations, natural gas distribution), health suitability of foods and substances, refers to odour as a marketing ploy and warns against unfair business practices. The legislation does not regulate odours in connection with the preservation and presentation of cultural heritage, e.g. in museums.


Mojca Ramšak
Full Professor of Cultural and Social Anthropology, Faculty of Arts, Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology; Faculty of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, Heritage Science Laboratory, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia


Presentation Type

Paper Presentation in a Themed Session


Multiple Legacies: Heritage, Traditions, Local Ecologies, Knowledge, Values, Protection


Odour, Environment, Health, Food, Heritage