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Monday, March 16, 2009Sector

End of testing cosmetics on animals?

Une nouvelle étape pour les défenseurs du bien-être animal

Since March 11, 2009, another milestone has been reached in the progressive ban on animal testing planned by the European Community. After the ban dealing with marketed cosmetic products, enforced since September 11, 2004, ingredients used in products shall now be tested using other methods, known as alternative methods. Is that equivalent to a full ban of animal testing on all of our cosmetics? Not that easy …

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March 17, 2009

In the section "Learn how to Read Labels" you may have noticed that the mention "Not tested on animals" is often somewhat ambiguous. And the new ban of the tests of ingredients on animals will not settle the matter on this topic.

A still unfinished process

Cosmetics manufacturers must demonstrate, previous to marketing a product, that this product is not likely to harm the human health, and that it is well tolerated by the skin. To do that, they have to test their product, in particular to check its potential of irritation or toxic effect.

The European directive which governs the cosmetics has planned the total ban of any test on animals, but step by step. Nowadays, animal testing of products as marketed and of ingredients is forbidden, even when there are no alternative methods.

The Problem: how can the harmlessness of a substance be checked when no alternative method to animal testing exists?
And a subtlety: the principle of the ban of animal testing of the ingredients is subjected to an exception, in particular, when there is a risk of toxicity of repeated amounts or for reproduction: a delay until March 11, 2013 is …

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