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Alternatives to Laboratory Animals - ATLA

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Cautious welcome for EU reassurance on deadline for animal test ban on cosmetic ingredients

There have been fears that the date for a total ban on testing cosmetics ingredients on animals would be postponed, because no replacement methods have been found for five types of animal toxicity test.  But a European Commission spokesman has said this week that the 2013 deadline is still in place, although an impact assessment on the ban is currently being prepared.


Chairman of FRAME Trustees Prof Michael Balls said: “While it is good that the Commission has repeated its intention to keep to the deadline, it is still possible, even likely, that the 2013 deadline will be extended. I am sure that we will not be alone in awaiting the Commission’s impact assessment with some trepidation.


“We were not convinced of the relevance or usefulness of five draft chapters circulated last autumn by the Commission, for consultation.  These draft chapters could not provide a credible basis for the Commission’s report, because they lacked sufficient focus on the specific nature of cosmetic ingredients, their uses, their local effects and metabolism at their sites of application, and, in particular, on whether their possible absorption into the body would be likely to lead to their accumulation in target sites at levels approaching Thresholds of Toxicological Concern.


“In addition, there continues to be uncertainty about how the provisions of the Cosmetics Directive will be applied, given the requirements of the REACH system and directives concerned with the safety of other chemicals and products.”


Archived January 31 2011