New Zealand has recently joined ranks with the 28 countries of the European Union, Israel, India, and the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo by declaring that ‘there is no use for testing cosmetics on animals – ever’.
The latest move of New Zealand’s government is to ban animal testing for “finished cosmetic products and their ingredients” – which has never happened in the country – and now, likely never will.
The amendment to the Animal Welfare Amendment Bill passed a debate phase on Tuesday, and is now expected to be enacted into law within the coming weeks. The Primary Industries Minister, Nathan Guy, applauded the symbolic move.
“To the best of our knowledge, there has never been any animal testing for cosmetics in New Zealand, but this amendment will send an important message this kind of testing is unacceptable to New Zealanders and will never happen here,” Guy said, according to a press release.
New Zealand is a very unpopular place for animal testing according to a recent poll. A survey conducted found that 89 percent of adults in the country do not support the practice. Cosmetic testing, which can involve rubbing chemicals onto animals’ shaved skin or dripping toxins into their eyes, is widely considered to be a cruel practice – regardless if the animal is a guinea pig, rabbit, rat, or other small critter.
Originally the amendment banned animal testing for medicine as well, but it was reworded in Parliament on Tuesday to restrict it to cosmetics. Still, animal advocates are calling the measure a win.
Said Claire Mansfield, a campaign director for Humane Society International, “We are thrilled that New Zealand’s politicians have taken this important step to vote out cosmetics cruelty.” She also called the victory “a moment to be celebrated for animal welfare and compassionate consumers.”
See also: Our Relationship With the Natural World