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June 22, 2012

HSI To EU Commissioner Dalli – Don’t Mislead Consumers With False Pledge on 2013 Animal-Tested Cosmetics Ban

More than 350,000 petition for a cruelty-free Europe by 2013

Humane Society International/Europe

  • Parade of bunnies: 27 "rabbits" gathered outside the European Commission prior to the delivery of the petitions. Philip Reynaers

  • HSI's Emily McIvor and Gaia Angelini presented a portion of the CrueltyFree2013 petitions to Commissioner John Dalli. Philip Reynaers

  • Consumers in the EU expect their authorities to honor their commitment to fully enforce the ban on animal testing. iStockphoto

BRUSSELS, Belgium— On 20 June leading animal welfare organisation Humane Society International had a private meeting with John Dalli, Commissioner for Health & Consumer Policy. HSI was deeply concerned to learn that a weakening of the promised 2013 sales ban was still being considered. Although Commissioner Dalli talks of “keeping the ban”, he is in fact considering a derogation that would allow companies to continue selling cosmetics in Europe that have been tested on animals abroad. A case by case analysis could be introduced to see whether animal testing for new cosmetics ingredients would be allowed.

Humane Society International believes that anything short of a fully enforced sales ban for animal-tested cosmetics from 2013, represents an unacceptable betrayal of the EU’s promise to consumers.

More than 350,000 people signed HSI’s CrueltyFree2013 petition to end the suffering of animals used to test cosmetics, including celebrities Leona Lewis, Ricky Gervais, Ke$ha, Melanie C, Mary McCartney, Chrissie Hynde and Sir Roger Moore. HSI joined with cruelty-free retailer Lush Cosmetics to dress as white rabbits for the petition presentation outside the European Commission headquarters in Brussels this week.

Emily McIvor, HSI’s EU Policy Adviser, said following the meeting:

“Hundreds of thousands of consumers have signed HSI’s petition for Europe to be cruelty-free in 2013 because they recognise that no beauty product is worth the price that animals are made to pay in testing laboratories. After two decades of promising European citizens and consumers a cruelty-free cosmetics market, it is unconscionable for EU policy makers to now consider introducing a legal loophole to perpetuate a practice that has no place in the 21st century.”

Commissioner Dalli revealed to Humane Society International that he is considering proposing a derogation to the 2013 sales ban whereby company applications for individual ingredients to be tested on animals could be assessed in exceptional circumstances to see if testing would be allowed. A proposal from the Commission would be subject to debate in the European Parliament and Council of Ministers, so even if the Commission proposes a derogation, MEPs and national government representatives can still vote to keep the full ban in place.

Go to www.hsi.org/becrueltyfree for latest campaign news.

ENDS

Media Contact: Wendy Higgins, +44 (0)7989 972 423, whiggins@hsi.org

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Humane Society International/Europe and its partner organisations together constitute one of the world's largest animal protection organisations — backed by 11 million people. For nearly 20 years, HSI has been working for the protection of all animals through the use of science, advocacy, education and hands-on programmes. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty worldwide — on the Web at hsieurope.org.

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