This communication is brought to you by the European Commission.
The Cosmetics Directive provides the regulatory framework for the phasing out of animal testing for cosmetics purposes. It establishes a prohibition to test finished cosmetic products and cosmetic ingredients on animals (testing ban), and a prohibition to market in the European Union finished cosmetic products and ingredients included in cosmetic products which were tested on animals for cosmetics purposes (marketing ban). The same provisions are contained in the Cosmetics Regulation, which replaces the Cosmetics Directive as of 11 July 2013.
The marketing ban applies since 11 March 2009 for all human health effects with the exception of repeated-dose toxicity, reproductive toxicity and toxicokinetics. For these specific health effects the marketing ban applies since 11 March 2013, irrespective of the availability of alternative non-animal tests.
The Commission was required, according to Article 4a (2.3) of the Cosmetics Directive, to analyze whether for technical reasons one or more of the complex tests covered by the 2013 marketing ban will not be developed and validated before 11 March 2013. In case alternative methods would not be available the Commission had to assess whether to make a legislative proposal in relation to the 2013 marketing ban.
On 11 March 2013 the Commission finalized the review process by adopting a Commission Communication to the European Parliament and the Council, which confirms the Commission’s commitment to maintain the 2013 deadline and outlines how it intends to further support research and innovation in this area while promoting animal welfare world-wide. The ECVAM 2013 Technical Report provides in addition a more detailed overview of progress made in the development of alternatives.
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