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Despite Fears, New Federal Bill Won’t Roll Back US Cosmetic Animal Testing Bans

by Charlotte Pointing

Oct 13, 2022

Earlier this year, Cruelty Free International (CFI)—one of the leading nonprofits working to end animal experimentation—expressed concerns that a new federal bill could nullify state bans on cosmetic animal testing. But a new version of the act confirms this won't happen.

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Back in June, activists raised the alarm that the FDA Safety and Landmark Advancements Act (FDASLA), a bill intended to revise and extend user-fee programs for medical devices, prescription drugs, and more, would have devastating consequences for animals.

Initially, the bill included provisions that would allow the FDA greater oversight of the cosmetics industry.

However, amid the 35 pages of new requirements for cosmetic manufacturers, there was no mention of animal testing and its prohibition. Due to a broad preemption clause, this would have invalidated any state laws against animal testing.

But now, all cosmetics language has been removed from the FDASLA by the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. This means that animal testing bans in states like California, New Jersey, and Illinois are safe.

CFI praised the change, but also expressed disappointment that the language wasn't kept in, with the addition of animal testing prohibition. An amendment like this would have banned cosmetic animal testing across the US, which, the nonprofit argues, is what consumers want.

One study, conducted by CFI, found that 71 percent of American adults oppose animal testing for cosmetics.

Countries that have banned cosmetic animal testing include Australia, South Korea, India, the UK, and all of the countries that make up the European Union (EU).

However, legislation is not perfect. The EU, for example, allows some chemicals used in cosmetics to be tested for worker safety purposes under its REACH regulations.

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