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Canada Proposes Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act

Canada is currently exploring the opportunity to amend the Food and Drugs Act to place a ban on a) testing cosmetics on animals and b) to selling cosmetics that have been tested on animals during the manufacturing process.

What’s the Status of the Bill?

Be mindful, however, that a bill is proposed legislation.  It is not yet law.  A bill must go through a series of examination by the Houses of Parliament, before it becomes law.  The bill’s purpose, the wording of the bill and the impact of the bill on industry are all considered.  Also, on a practical level, whether the political will/appetite to enact the bill as law is also a factor.  Bill S-214 is currently before the Canadian Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology.

What are the Salient Features of the Bill?

Specifically, the summary of the Bill as included in the official text states that:

This enactment amends the Food and Drugs Act to prohibit cosmetic animal testing and the sales of cosmetics developed or manufactured using cosmetic animal testing. It also provides that no evidence derived from animal testing may be used to established the safety of a cosmetic.”

Animal testing is currently defined as including topical application and/or internal ingestion of cosmetics products to a live non-human vertebrate for the purposes of evaluating the safety and/or efficacy in the development and/or manufacturing of the cosmetics product.

The bill pertains to animal testing conducted in Canada.

The bill does contain a provision whereby exceptions may be granted where there is no viable alternative method to animal testing.

What Can We Expect Next?

With today’s raised consciousness, this proposed bill is very au courant.  To a large extent, as with any newly proposed legislation, we will have to take a wait and see approach.

Bear in mind that if this proposed legislation becomes law, classifying what constitutes cosmetics is not always straightforward.  Therefore, determining the application of these new provisions may be challenging.

If your company operates in the cosmetics industry, feel free to reach out to Froese Law so that we can keep you updated on this proposed legislation.