Friday, April 1, 2011

UK Intends to Stop Animal Testing on Household Products - Animal Rights Groups Rejoice

Recently the UK government signaled that it would end animal testing for household products.  And at least one animal welfare group has expressed its pleasure.  The British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection, more popularly known as BUAV, said that they welcomed "a statement made by Home Office Minister, Lynne Featherstone that the Government intends to ban the animal testing of both finished household products and their ingredients." 

BUAV notes that the "statement comes in response to a Parliamentary Question tabled by Adrian Sanders MP on March 28th 2011" and that the ban will include “all products that are primarily intended for use in the home, including detergents and other laundry products, household cleaners, air-fresheners, toilet blocks, polishes, paper products such as infant nappies [i.e., diapers], paints, glues (and removers), other furnishing and DIY products and household pesticides.”

Governments and animal welfare groups around the globe are working on ways to reduce or eliminate animal testing of chemicals.  I have discussed before how organizations are working to develop alternative testing methods.   Current protocols for testing chemicals and products involve doing in vivo, that is, in life, tests using various animals - mostly mice, rats and rabbits - as surrogates to assess toxicity.  So while some NGOs argue that more testing is necessary to characterize the hazards of chemicals, animal welfare groups argue that such animal testing is both cruel and unnecessary.

For more about BUAV you can check out their web sites: BUAV and Go Cruelty Free.

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