Australia is implementing a ban on cosmetic testing on animals (the ban). The ban commenced on 1 July 2020 along with the Industrial Chemicals Act 2019. It means new cosmetic ingredients manufactured in, or imported into Australia will not be able to use information from animal testing to prove safety.
A stakeholder advisory group comprising representatives from the cosmetics industry, animal welfare organisations, researchers and Government, is supporting the roll-out of the ban.
The Ban Cosmetic Testing on Animals Implementation Advisory Group will meet three times over a 12-month period. The group will provide expert guidance and feedback to the Department of Health about non-legislative components of the ban’s implementation.
The Department of Health chairs the Ban Cosmetic Testing on Animals Implementation Advisory Group. There are seven stakeholder members:
- Accord Australasia
- Australian Society of Cosmetic Chemists
- Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources
- Humane Society International
- Office of Chemical Safety (Australian Industrial Chemicals Introduction Scheme)
- National Health and Medical Research Council
- RSPCA Australia.
The group will meet at key points throughout the ban’s implementation.
May 2020 meeting
The first Ban Cosmetic Testing on Animals Implementation Advisory Group was held on 6 May 2020. The meeting discussed preparations for the ban’s commencement. This included plans for:
- Communicating the ban and the commencement of the Australian Industrial Chemicals Introduction Scheme.
- Developing a Voluntary Industry Code for the cosmetics industry in relation to promotional claims about animal testing.
The meeting also considered alternatives to animal testing to demonstrate chemical safety, in the context of the National Health and Medical Research Council’s Information paper: The implementation of the 3Rs in Australia.
October 2020 meeting
The second Ban Cosmetic Testing on Animals Implementation Advisory Group was held on 21 October 2020.
Members were updated on progress in relation to a communication package being developed to support the ban’s implementation. The National Retail Association is partnering with the Department to deliver this initiative. The package is expected to be launched in early 2021.
Members reviewed the draft Voluntary Code of Conduct for the Cosmetics Industry, which is being developed by the peak body for the cosmetics and personal care industry, Accord Australasia.
Member also noted the commencement of the Australian Industrial Chemicals Introduction Scheme and progress towards updating the Australian code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes, including a public consultation round led by the National Health and Medical Research Council.