The Odournet group

Odournet is an international group of sensory experts and environmental odour management consultants that develops, manages and delivers top level expertise to assist industry and government authorities. Odournet helps its clients to:

  • diagnose and solve environmental odour nuisance related problems,
  • improve sensory attributes of their consumer products and materials, supporting product development, consumer trials and claim substantiation by applying sensory expertise.
  • Unravel and understand the molecular origin and composition of the sensory aroma.

With branches in 5 countries, teams of specialists focusing on key areas of interest, and mobile labs ensuring that all skills are available globally, Odournet’s structure matches the often multinational reach of its clients, offering unified sensory methodology across a large global network.

Odournet is an independent group of limited liability companies, owned and organised by Sensenet Holding BV. Our branch directors have considerable autonomy, and are typically also the principal consultants in their area. All branch companies deliver the full scope of Odournet services and are recognised as odour experts in their own right.

Odournet has a sister company called SENSENET which offers services to evaluate and assess odours and other sensory attributes of products & materials from all sectors: perfumery, cosmetics, food, plastics, textiles, automotive, chemicals, pharmaceuticals… Please visit the SENSENET website for further details:

Odournet vision

Our vision is to deliver world-leading sensory expertise and innovation. We aim to achieve this by:

  • maintaining our position as the world’s leading odour management consultancy
  • expanding our global reach in sensory and molecular analysis of products and materials
  • expanding our activities in molecular odour evaluation, unravelling the molecular origins of what we smell
  • continuing to develop, manage and deliver top-level expertise on sensory and instrumental odour analysis techniques for environmental nuisance management and product optimisation and material testing
  • using the digital cloud revolution to resolve client’s challenges more effectively
  • respecting and balancing the interests of people, planet and profit
  • providing opportunities for our dedicated specialist staff to develop their careers in line with their evolving interests and skills, both in intellectual and organisational scope and reward.
People are at the heart of our vision
People are at the heart of our vision


Today, Odournet is a team of more than 50 odour experts across six countries, serving industry and regulators alike. Three decades ago, it all began with one man’s project to investigate the impact of mushroom composting odours. Our timeline of events shows what happened next:

Odournet’s founder Ton van Harreveld set out to innovate odour measurement
Odournet’s founder Ton van Harreveld set out to innovate odour measurement

Today We’ve come a long way, and we’re still aiming high. Our goal is to maintain our position as a leading global provider of sensory expertise, molecular odour evaluation and environmental odour management consultancy.We plan to increase our team to around 100, to make sure that our specialist sensory experts can find career opportunities at all levels within the Odournet group, which ensures the best possible service to our clients.

2018 We have launched the SENSENET division, part of the Odournet Group SENSENET is in charge of product and materials odour testing. Sensenet assists producers and designers of consumer goods to improve the sensory experience associated with their product.

2016 After five years of successful expansion and team integration the shareholders developed different views on the further development of the company and its innovation strategy. This led to an amicable agreement to spin off Odournet NL BV and Odournet GmbH which on January 1st 2016 founded a Company called Olfasense. The Odournet Group continues under its familiar brand name with its existing global network of Companies in France, United Kingdom, Spain, México, Brazil and India. The companies will maintain existing collaborative links to better serve multinational clients with a global reach and unified methodology. The manufacture of olfactometers continues in Olfasense, while Odournet retains its focus on molecular odour evaluation. Ton van Harreveld becomes CEO of Odournet Group, to guide the company through a transition.

2014 Odournet Brasil is established, with partner Yanko Guimaraes as managing director. Simon Rützel-Grünberg takes over the CEO role on September 1st, while founder Ton van Harreveld steps down to focus on innovation.

2013 Odournet Holding India Pvt Ltd is established, in Goa, India.

2011 PRG Odournet NV in Gent, Belgium decides to seek an independent course, and a management buyout is agreed with Toon van Elst and other shareholders. The company continues as Olfascan NV. Odournet establishes a cutting edge laboratory for Molecular Odour Evaluation based on GCMS/TOF and GC Sniffing in Barcelona, Spain.

2010 Odournet merged with ecoma GmbH and OLFAtec GmbH, seizing the opportunity to sustain innovation by pooling talents and ideas.

Founded in 1976, ecoma’s initial focus was on instrument development, initiated by Dr Heinrich Mannebeck – known as ‘the father of modern olfactometry’ in Germany. ecoma became the world’s leading supplier of the TO series olfactometers.

OLFAtec was founded in 2001 as an ecoma subsidiary. Its focus was on sensory product and material testing and it was the first company in the world to be accredited for the Interlaboratory Comparison (ILC) EN 13725 testing scheme that is still in use today.

2003 The EN13725:2003 Air Quality – European Standard is published. This is the clumination of many years of involvement in methodology and instrument development by Odournet founder Ton van Harreveld, who served as convenor in the technical wrking group CEN/TC264/WG2 ‘Olfactometry’, which prepared the standard.

1993 The company became Odournet, and its first international office was set up in the UK. Development of olfactometers was moved in-house, thanks to a new internal R&D team. The business grew – employing odour experts in new offices in Belgium, Spain, France and Mexico – but maintained its specialism in environmental odour assessment, consultancy and odour measurement.

1989 PRA BV was established when Frans Vossen joined PRA. Within a few years, the team had grown to more than a dozen people.

1987 The first computer-controlled olfactometer was introduced. Called Olfaktomat, it was a collaboration between Neomat and the two Teunissen van Manen brothers, who developed the software and hardware in partnership with van Harreveld. Meanwhile, PRA continued its odour assessment consultancy projects.

1980 Project Research Amsterdam (PRA) was launched. Its founder, Ton van Harreveld, saw opportunities to improve and standardise the way we measure odours, and he set out to innovate olfactometry.