BOTANICA2020 Review: Report from the Berlin working group on Sept. 23, 2020.
September 24, 2020 By Julia Falkenstein
The autumn working group “Aromatherapy Berlin” took place entirely in retrospect of BOTANICA2020.
The aroma conference, which took place from 18-20.09.2020, was organized biennially by Rhiannon Lewis and her team, as it has been since 2012. Due to the Covid pandemic, the event first had to be rescheduled and ultimately held virtually.
AK chair Julia Falkenstein gave an overview of the key points of the Aroma Conference as well as ten “best of” from the program (announcement: a detailed report will follow in the next AromaReport).
Botanica2020 was held with truly global participation (with audience members from all over Europe, South Africa, Australia, Japan, China, India, Central, South and North America, many countries in the Middle East, North Africa, etc.), with 20 live presentations over two days and nine online masterclasses on the third day. In addition, 18 pre-recorded presentations could be viewed (including, by the way, AroFI member Barbara Daniel-Leppich, bravo!) and 40 exhibitors could be visited virtually.
Virtual exhibitors included distillers, cultivation partners, aroma labs, specialty publishers of books and magazines, aroma apps and databases, fragrance jewelers, and on and on. In addition, some “relaxation videos” were presented, for example, a guided hypnosis or movement work for the circulatory and lymphatic systems – very helpful, because after all, as a virtual participant, you sat in front of the computer from 09 o’clock in the morning until 09 o’clock in the evening!
The introductory topic was the life and work of René-Maurice Gattefossé, whose granddaughter and great-granddaughter were the main guests and speakers opening the conference.
One major area was clinical aromatherapy, with contributions from psychoaromatherapy, depression, dementia, ADD/ADHD, autism, diabetes mellitus (S. Kreft), cancer (M.A. Jones), pain (R. Herz), coronavirucity (P. Frennet, D. Pesoni, M. Valussi), and many others.
Second area was safety, with contributions on contact dermatitis (Thomas Rustemeyer) and interaction of aroma oils and drugs.
The second day was strongly focused on sustainability (wild collection, nature conservation (S. Leopold), climate change), and the conference concluded with a discussion of ten aroma education experts who exchanged ideas and agreed on a “red thread” for the worldwide development of educational standards.
Last but not least, some of the regionally working exhibitors were presented, e.g. BioCham.com in Syria, the AOWA Association of Women’s Action for Training and Rehabilitation in Palestine (www.beethechange.it), arxfarm.com from Slovenia or essences-bulgaria.com in Bulgaria.