As from 1 July 2020, Australia will have a de facto ban on new animal testing for chemicals solely used in cosmetics.
The ban does not apply to animal testing in essence, the intentions are to prove that the chemicals manufactured in or imported to Australia are safe to humans and the environment without the use of data from animal testing. Thus for all intents and purposes, it is a ban.
The new legislation restrictions do not apply to historical animal test data before 1 July 2020. It would mean that Australia will not be accepting test experiment results derived from animals as evidence of a cosmetic product being safe and effective, testing after 1 July 2020.
Cosmetic brands will be required to prove that their products are safe and effective with non-animal experiments.
In partnership with Humane Society International (HSI), the government outlined 11 measures to guarantee that all cosmetic ingredients are covered in the ban.
To ensure the ban does not have a negative impact on the trade, a transition period is required to allow for fair and sufficient time to adjust and understand the new requirement.
The campaign manager of Humane Society International (HSI),Hannah Stuart, who is fighting for #BeCrueltyFree Australia, claims that they are grateful for the support from the government, and will make sure that the ban is successfully carried out.
However, the 1-year gap for the transition seems a bit much, as the ban was divulged about two years prior and that should have been enough time for the industries to get their act together.
Humane Society International is ready to move the date forward, but the government may not agree to it. At least, the positive thing is that the bill has finally been passed, and 2020 will be the end to cosmetics cruelty.
Animal testing is said to be unethical and ineffective, yet it is still used around the world. HSI estimates that around 100,000 to 200,000 animals “suffer and die” for cosmetics every year.
Human-relevant, non-animal test methods are already available and are being used in other countries, such as in the European Union. We need more of these methods, and government support is essential for further progress in this area.
The new legislation states, that the industrial chemicals for sole use in cosmetics may only be manufactured and imported if they provide relevant safety data that they do not rely on animal testing. This provides a disincentive for companies to conduct toxicity (safety) testing on animals because such data will not be acceptable under the new legislation.
The new legislation is indeed good news, and a major win situation for animals, consumers, and science.
Let’s hope that other nations follow this example. Creating a #BeCrueltyFree World.