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Firmenich Launches Focus Powered by EmotiCODE™

The first ever fragrance innovation to improve focus and boost attention to help get in a state of flow.

Geneva, Switzerland, November 30th, 2022 -

Firmenich, the world’s largest privately-owned perfume and taste company, launches Focus powered by EmotiCODE™, the first patent-pending fragrance design rules demonstrated to give consumers the benefit of improved focus and help them get into a state of flow. This new solution is the latest neuroscientific advancement and addition to the EmotiON program, bringing together proprietary consumer insights from across the world, cutting-edge neuroscientific research and the expertise of our perfumers, to deliver positive emotions to consumers.


Human responses to smell are at the root of consumers’ love for fragrances since scents can elicit emotions and evoke profound memories. In Firmenich’s global ‘New Next Now’ Barometer study1 on consumer insights, 73% of consumers say they “appreciate scent more than before” and 66% of consumers believe that fragrances can do more than “make products smell good” by providing added benefits. In fact, consumers are turning towards fragrance to provide holistic wellness solutions for mind and body, and help their overall mental well-being. Firmenich brings focus into peoples’ lives, through fragrance, which helps consumers achieve increased mental performance, making them more efficient in their tasks. 


Firmenich has unlocked the code to Focus, thanks to an innovative three-step process:
1.    Identify - Fragrances and emotions are intricately linked, as our sense of smell has a direct connection to the part of our brain that elicits emotions. Firmenich’s unique ScentMove® tool provides a template for verbalization of emotions and enables the evaluation of feelings elicited by odors and fragrances. Using a questionnaire based on this model, our Consumer Insights team were able to identify which emotions laddered up to Focus.
2.    Create - Creation starts with unlocking EmotiCODE™, a set of design rules to create fragrances that evoke the emotional response linked to focus. Through the Artificial Intelligence model developed by Firmenich D-lab and leveraging on the unique IRIS database – an Interactive Research Intelligent System that stores data from more than 34,000 fragrances and over 1.9 million consumer interviews across 51 countries – these emotion-centered, fragrance design rules allow our perfumers to create fragrances shown to be associated with increased mental performance in cognitive tasks.
3.    Certify – EmotiCODE™ Focus fragrances were tested for their impact on mental performance using two different cognitive tasks: the Stroop task (Stroop, 1935; MacLeod, 1991), a classical paradigm to measure interference and attention, and a mental arithmetic task that measures quantitative reasoning. These tests confirmed EmotiCODE™ Focus fragrances increased mental processing speed in both tasks, versus fragrances that did not use EmotiCODE™ creation rules and the control condition with no odor. The study confirms that a fragrance that was specifically designed to enhance Focus indeed boosted mental performance.


“At Firmenich, we have an industry-leading set of data, coming from extensive global research on consumer insights. We’ve done comprehensive analysis to be able study the emotional responses of humans to scents,” says Sarah Reisinger, Chief Research Officer. “For over 25 years, our scientists at Firmenich have been leading neuroscientific research on olfaction and emotion. Our research on scent perception and bioresponse is very extensive and paved the way for us to understand the transformation of molecular signals into odor, flavor and emotions. This is the foundation of our EmotiON program, which uses a range of R&D and market research tools to create a model or framework to identify, create and certify the emotional benefits of fragrance.”

There are many potential benefits that the Focus fragrance can bring in people’s homes, in their personal and shared spaces, and in their lives. “Focus is crucial to mental wellness,” says Ilaria Resta, President for Global Perfumery. “Now, for the first time ever, we can help consumers achieve focus, wherever they are, with fragrance. These fragrances can deliver related benefits, such as mental efficiency and clarity of mind, bringing the power of Positive Perfumery to consumers.”


For more information, please visit or here for a more detailed press kit.


1‘New Next Now’ Barometer Study (Wave 4, 2022 with 8,200 respondents in 15 countries)


Camille LE GALL
+(33) 6 14 71 41 2

About Firmenich 

Firmenich, the world’s largest privately-owned fragrance and taste company, was founded in Geneva, Switzerland, in 1895 and has been family-owned for 127 years. Firmenich is a leading business-to-business company specialized in the research, creation, manufacture and sale of perfumes, flavors and ingredients. Renowned for its world-class research and creativity, as well as its leadership in sustainability, Firmenich offers its customers superior innovation in formulation, a broad and high-quality palette of ingredients, and proprietary technologies including biotechnology, encapsulation, olfactory science and taste modulation. Firmenich had an annual turnover of 4.7 billion Swiss Francs at end June 2022. More information about Firmenich is available at