China to stop mandatory animal testing for beauty companies

Current laws require all pre-market products to be tested on animals

China is changing its rule on mandatory animal testing. Getty Images
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As one of the world’s largest economies, ensuring a presence in China is a top priority for most major companies, including within the beauty industry.

But the laws for cosmetics companies in China requires brands to submit their beauty products for animal testing before they can be sold in the country, which, naturally, has prevented many animal-friendly brands from expanding there.

But after years of lobbying, the Institute for In Vitro Sciences (IIVS) has announced that, from 2020, the Chinese government will introduce legislation to approve nine new methods for cosmetic testing methods that do not involve animals.

The new methods will become the favoured option for cosmetic testing, an IIVIS release states, helping China to move away from animal testing and modernise its pre-market methods.

China is the only country in the world to impose legal animal testing, and, as the world's largest beauty economy – making up 20 per cent of the global market – has created a major hurdle for many ethical brands.

The Humane Society International said that the news was “encouraging”, but added it was not a guarantee that pre-market or post-market testing would not continue in the country.


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