Animal advocates are celebrating a landmark decision handed down from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) to fast-track the removal of two final tests of cosmetic products on animals from India’s safety standard.
“The directive was issued during an emergency meeting of the Bureau of Indian Standards PCD19 Cosmetic Sectional Committee, to which HSI/India was a special invitee, and marks the beginning of the end of acute oral toxicity (lethal poisoning) and oral mucosal irritation animal testing for cosmetic purposes in India,”according to the Humane Society International.
From now on, companies who want to test their products or ingredients will have to submit a non-animal testing proposal to the DCGI for approval.
“It’s unthinkable that in this day and age, animals are still choking on cosmetic chemicals in decades-old poisoning tests while companies choke on their own inertia in switching to a cruelty-free business model,” said HSI India Be Cruelty-Free Campaign Manager Alokparna Sengupta.
In the absence of non-animal alternatives, validation by the regulator will be done on an individual basis. The regulator is currently examining the European Union’s ban, according to the Hindu Business Line.
After decades of campaigning, the EU is set to finalize its ban this month, and animal advocates are counting down the days. This historic victory for animals means that from March 11 onwards, anyone who wants to sell new cosmetics products and their raw ingredients in the EU may not test either on animals anywhere the world.
Israel also recently enacted a law banning animal testing for cosmetics, personal care and household products that went into effect on December 31.
Both of these moves send a strong message in support of cruelty-free products to the rest of the world and have peaked curiosity and support from a number of countries, including Korea, who will hopefully follow suit.
“Following the European marketing ban we are seeing doors open in all the major exporting countries as industry tackles the job of converting all their safety testing to modern non-animal methods. We are particularly pleased to see the active interest of Korean industry and we will do all we can to encourage progress,” said Cruelty Free International Director of Policy, Dr Nick Palmer.
To find cruelty-free products already available on the international market, visit gocrueltyfree.org.
Photo credit: Thinkstock
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