Date: May 2005
I have been given a question to answer. Many deodorants are now called
Natural Crystal Deodorants, they are made from ammonium alum. Can
ammonium alum be called natural and how is it made.
Beware the term "natural" regardless of the context. There are no
rules, regulations, or laws that specify what the term "natural" means.
The inference a product labeled "natural" wishes to convey is that
"natural" is equivalent to "safe" or "pure". "Alum" is the common name for
aluminum sulfate used in cooking. One could guess that ammonium alum is a
mixed salt of aluminum sulfate and ammonium sulfate, but that is only a
guess without specifying the relative amount of aluminum ion and ammonium
ion present. It could be made by dissolving certain amounts of Al2(SO4)3
and (NH4)2(SO4) together and evaporating off the water. But that does not
mean it is (or isn't) "natural". The term "natural" is advertising hype.
Ultimately everything is "natural".
Similar disinformation is labeling a product loaded with fat
"cholesterol free" or "no carbohydrates".
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Update: June 2012