Content Header Mask

BUAV criticises expert report on cosmetic testing


The BUAV, as part of the ECEAE (European Coalition to End Animal Experiments) has criticised an expert report on the status of non-animal alternatives for cosmetics testing as being ‘confused and inadequate’.

In 2003, following years of campaigning by the ECEAE, the European Union introduced a ban on animal-testing for cosmetics in the EU which came into force in March 2009.  A ban on the sale and import (marketing ban) into the EU of cosmetics tested on animals outside the EU also came into force last March. However, there was an exception for three particular animal tests.  For those tests, the deadline was March 2013.  In addition, the 2013 deadline can be extended if it is decided that non-animal alternatives will not be available. 

A series of five reports was published by the European Commission following expert working groups to determine the status of alternatives for cosmetics testing. This included two additional animal tests as falling under the 2013 deadline (skin sensitisation and carcinogenicity tests). In the legal text, these tests are not specified as being subject to the 2013 deadline.

The ECEAE submitted its comments on these reports to the Commission this week. The ECEAE found that that these expert working groups did not adequately consider currently available alternative methods and were overly negative in their conclusions.

Dr Katy Taylor stated: “Overall the reports were inconsistent and incomplete. The experts did not invest enough time to properly consider the scientific evidence supporting the validity of alternative methods. Instead they resorted to giving their opinion; no matter how expert they are, this is no substitute for scientific evidence. This has been yet another wasted opportunity.”

The ECEAE believes the European Commission is attempting to weaken legislation introduced to bring an end to the controversial testing and marketing of animal tested cosmetics within the EU and such a move will be extremely disappointing to citizens across the EU who support this ban.

For further information: see