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BUAV welcomes UK announcement on enforcing marketing ban on animal tested cosmetics

19/07/2013

The BUAV has welcomed the news that product information files will be examined by Trading Standards officers enforcing the EU marketing ban in the UK on animal tested cosmetics.

Product information files were introduced as part of the new European cosmetics legislation which came into force last week. Every product placed onto the market must have an accompanying file which gives detailed information about the product including any animal testing which has taken place during its development.

The Government had previously indicated that the ban on the importing and marketing of new cosmetics tested on animals, which entered into force on 11 March this year, would be largely enforced by reacting to concerns raised from the public. The announcement was made in response to a Parliamentary Question tabled by Kerry McCarthy MP, who has been working on the issue of enforcement with the BUAV for some time.

The news that product information files will be examined "in the course of their normal business" will ensure that consumers can have confidence that no animals will have been harmed in the development of the cosmetic products they use.

Ireland was the first country to announce that the files would be used, and the BUAV is working with colleagues around Europe in the European Coalition to End Animal Experiments (ECEAE) to ensure consumers across the continent can have full confidence that the long-awaited animal testing ban for cosmetics is being enforced.

The implementation of the last phase of the European Union’s ban came into force on 11th March 2013 following over 20 years of campaigning by the BUAV and our colleagues in the ECEAE.

Notes

Article 11 (2) (e) of the New EU Regulations says Product Information Files must include:

“data on any animal testing performed by the manufacturer, his agents or suppliers, relating to the development or safety assessment of the cosmetic product or its ingredients, including any animal testing performed to meet the legislative or regulatory requirements of third countries.”

The previous PQ mentioned above was:

Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (1) what steps the Government are taking to ensure that cosmetics companies based in the UK comply in full with the prohibition on importing and marketing of animal-tested cosmetics in line with the 7th amendment to the European cosmetics directive, directive 76/768 EEC, on its entry into force in 2013; [133974]

(2) what steps the Government are taking to ensure the enforcement in the UK of the prohibition on importing and marketing of animal-tested cosmetics in line with the 7th amendment to the European cosmetics directive, directive 76/768 EEC on its entry into force in 2013. 

Jo Swinson [holding answer 17 December 2012]: Day-to-day enforcement of the regulations is the responsibility of local authority Trading Standards services. Trading Standards have access to the safety assessment dossiers which companies must retain for the cosmetic products they supply. These dossiers will contain information on how any testing has been carried out.

The Department will work with Trading Standards to develop guidance on these provisions ahead of implementation of the 7th amendment to the European cosmetics directive. Anybody who is concerned that a product or its ingredients are supplied illegally should contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service.