Canada is passing a new bill that seeks to prohibit the testing of cosmetic products on animals, as well as the sale of cosmetic products that use animal testing.
Bill S-214 was introduced by Senator Carolyn Stewart Olson back in December 2015, when she sought to amend the Food and Drugs Act with the Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act. The bill, which is currently being reviewed by the Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology, contains the following points:
"No cosmetic animal testing in Canada. Cosmetics and cosmetic ingredients could not be topically applied or administered internally to an animal for the purpose of evaluating safety or efficacy."
"No evidence derived from animal testing. Evidence based on animal testing that was conducted after the Bill is in force could not be submitted or otherwise used to establish the safety of a cosmetic or a cosmetic ingredient."
"The Minister will have the discretion to authorize and approve animal testing. Approval would only be granted where there is no other alternative method available to evaluate possible human health problems associated with a cosmetic or an ingredient in a cosmetic. Public consultations would be necessary before the Minister would grant approval, so manufacturers are unlikely to obtain authorization easily."
"The Bill, via its regulations, would allow the government to treat certain drugs (e.g. sunscreens and oral care products) as cosmetics. Such a classification would contribute to blurring the line between cosmetics, drugs and natural health products, and be complicated by parallel proposed amendments to these regulatory categories."
In order for the bill to become law, it must be passed by the Senate and then by the House of Commons, where even more amendments will be made.
The bill has received outstanding support from several animal rights groups, as well as consumers who believe the bill will have a strong environmental impact. Currently, there are no details on how the bill would affect cosmetic manufacturing and retail processes in Canada.