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CEO’s Blog: Cruelty free China update

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Welcome progress in China but too early for cruelty free certainty

With a month gone of 2021, our work for animals in laboratories is continuing full speed ahead. This includes moving forward with our campaign for a cruelty free world and doing everything possible to bring our Leaping Bunny brands to Chinese consumers, free from the risk of animal testing.

I have written before about an update to Chinese regulations relating to the import of cosmetic products, which could open the door to a waiver of the animal tests that have previously been mandatory for imports of cosmetics to China. The changes, which come into force later this year, signal that if companies can produce a certificate conforming to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and a product safety assessment issued by authorities in their home country and acceptable to Chinese regulators, then the waiver will be granted.

The first country to so far explore this opportunity has been France after its National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products developed a dedicated platform allowing manufacturers to collect the necessary certificates. It looks like, by providing a government service to enable cosmetics brands to qualify for exemptions when exporting products to China, France may be charting a path that other countries could potentially follow, and we look forward to seeing how this works in practice.

It is great to see these positive steps and we hope that it won’t be too long before Leaping Bunny brands may soon be able to import general cosmetics into China and remain cruelty free if the countries where their production base is located can agree a GMP process with the Chinese authorities and our Leaping Bunny rules are met.

Of course, until we find out more about how the agreement works in France and see what other states might be doing, it is difficult to know how long this process might take. Nevertheless, this is progress, and we are pleased about the potential for our cruelty free brands in China.

We will be following the process in France and elsewhere closely and looking at what other national authorities are doing to secure similar agreements and talking to our brands. In the months ahead, we plan on monitoring the implementation of the new regulation and will keep all our Leaping Bunny brands and supporters updated, looking forward to the day when it is finally possible for cruelty free brands to import into China.

It has been a long journey - but there is now a light at the end of the tunnel, and we are excited about the future for cruelty free cosmetics in China.

Michelle Thew

Chief Executive Officer

Cruelty Free International