Think of the year 1961 and what springs to mind? Is it Yuri Gagarin blasting off into space? Perhaps JFK being inaugurated as US President? Maybe even Spurs winning the double or The Beatles performing for the first time in Liverpool’s Cavern Club? But buried beneath all that is an anniversary that might interest all you packaging junkies – 50 years ago the British Aerosol Manufacturers’ Association (BAMA) was born.
Aerosols have been around a little longer. Over 80 years ago, insecticide became the first product to take advantage of the format with several others following suite. Today there’s a veritable smorgasbord of applications including (deep breath) paint, hairspray, shaving foam, deodorants, furniture polish, hair mousse, shower gels and asthma inhalers.
With so many aerosols already on the market by 1961, it was clearly about time Britain had its own trade association. In its 50 years, the BAMA lists several key achievements that have promoted safety and the environment. In the case of the latter, aerosols have been considered anti-green and linked with damaging CFCs. In 1989 the BAMA worked with the industry to remove CFCs from consumer aerosols, 10 years before legislation came in, while the organisation also helped develop a voluntary agreement not to use greenhouse gases “except in very technical safety circumstances”.
Aerosol technology has come on leaps and bounds and recent applications include liquid plasters and DNA Tracer Spray. Back in 1961 that would have been the stuff of dreams – today it’s a reality and who knows what kind of products will benefit from aerosol technology in the next 50 years.