The UK has banned the issuing of licences for animal testing of chemicals exclusively used as cosmetic ingredients with immediate effect.
The country had been issuing licences in line with European Union REACH chemicals regulations that permit animal testing of cosmetic ingredients as a last resort to demonstrate worker and environmental safety.
That practice will now stop, UK Home Secretary Suella Braverman (pictured) told Parliment in a written statement.
“The government recognises the public concern around the testing on animals of chemicals used as ingredients in cosmetics, and the new opportunities available to us to depart from the EU testing regime,” she said.
“I can confirm, therefore, that from today no new licences will be granted for animal testing of chemicals that are exclusively intended to be used as ingredients in cosmetics products. The government is also engaging with the relevant companies to urgently determine a way forward on these legacy licences.”
Braverman added: “Modern alternatives mean there are opportunities to design non-animal testing strategies for these chemicals so that worker and environmental safety is unlikely to be compromised, and potentially enhanced.
“In this way, working with industry, the government is seeking to improve safety by the application of new non-animal science and technology.”
Animal testing for consumer safety of cosmetics and their ingredients was banned in the UK in 1998. This ban remains in force.