SAFE has joined forces with Humane Society International and Lush Cosmetics to launch the New Zealand arm of the largest-ever global campaign to end animal testing for cosmetics. The campaign, launched to coincide with World Week for Animals in Laboratories, is being rolled out simultaneously in forty-eight countries including New Zealand, the United States, Canada, India, Australia, South Korea, Russia and South Africa.
Troy Seidle, director of research & toxicology for Humane Society International, said:
"Animal testing is the ugly secret of the beauty industry, and it's time for it to stop. Thousands of animals such as rabbits and mice continue to endure chemical poisoning tests just to produce new lipsticks and shampoos, and that's simply unacceptable in a modern society."
In the EU animal testing of cosmetics is already banned and a sales ban is due to be implemented in March 2013. Outside the EU animal testing for cosmetics continues and is even a legal requirement in some countries. Lush and Humane Society International are working together in countries across the globe to ban both cosmetics animal testing and the sale of cosmetics tested on animals. SAFE is joining HSI's global Be Cruelty-Free campaign to call for such a ban in New Zealand.
SAFE Campaign Manager Mandy Carter said: "While SAFE understands no New Zealand-based companies are currently conducting any product testing on animals, New Zealand law doesn't forbid it so it could happen if a company applies for and is given government approval. There is absolutely no need for cosmetics to be tested on animals and we would like to see this enshrined in New Zealand law to ensure it will never happen."
Consumers are being urged to sign a petition in Lush stores from 17 to 26 April, and online at lush.co.nz and safeshopper.org.nz. Kiwis will be able to support both an international ban, and at the same time send a strong message to the New Zealand government that animal testing for cosmetics needs to be banned by law.
Megan Taylor, PR and Marketing Manager at Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics, said: "Animals should be protected by robust laws which force ALL companies to adopt humane methods to bring their products to market. We are petitioning John Key to follow the EU's lead to put in place a New Zealand ban on animal testing and to ban the sale of new cosmetics that have been tested on animals."
Lush, SAFE and Humane Society International believe that testing on animals to produce new cosmetic products or ingredients is morally and scientifically unjustified. Animals are subjected to considerable pain and distress during toxicity tests; even pregnant animals are used and their unborn babies chemically poisoned. Animal toxicity tests are also scientifically unreliable for assuring human safety because animals and humans can respond very differently to the same chemicals.
Cosmetics can easily be produced without animal testing by using the thousands of existing ingredients for which safety data is already available and advanced non-animal testing methods such as 3D human skin models, test-tube cell tests and computer models.
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