Progress to stop animal testing in China

The government in China has approved two more non-animal methods for testing cosmetics products for eye irritation and skin sensitisation in the country. 

The two newly approved tests, the short time exposure assay for eye irritation and the direct peptide reaction assay for skin sensitisation, will mean that no animals will now need to be used in the testing reactions against ingredients for cosmetic use.

The tests come following a grant from PETA US to Institute for In Vitro Sciences (IIVS), leading experts in the field of non-animal testing methods, in 2012. IIVS scientists worked with Chinese officials to approve the first non-animal test method, the 3T3 neutral red uptake phototoxicity assay, which is used to test cosmetics for their potential toxicity when they come into contact with sunlight. The Chinse government have accepted the results of non-animal test methods since 2014, but only for non–special use cosmetics manufactured in China. Tests on animals are still required for all imported and special-use cosmetics, regardless of which country they are manufactured in.

The approval of these two new tests marks major progress. PETA US Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo, says: 

"The approval of these two modern and humane tests is a huge step forward for China. No animal should be poisoned or blinded for a consumer product – or any other reason."

The PETA US Beauty Without Bunnies database currently lists over 3,800 companies that don't test on animals anywhere in the world.