Most times when we hear the name China, the first thing we think about is their food culture which includes eating everything living, for most vegans, it might be considered that the Chinese are insensitive or inhumane not valuing life in all its forms. However, I am pleased to let you know that the Chinese government took a big step towards abolishing the use of pro-animal cruelty products. The Chinese government has considered the plight of many animal activists and are finally stopping mandatory pre-market animal testing for ordinary imported cosmetic products. This might be considered as a baby step for many but it is actually a huge leap forward in that changes never occur instantly but slowly and simultaneously. This new update just goes a long way to prove that the voices of activists fighting for animal rights are not being wasted and the governments are actually listening to them.
On June 29, 2020, Chinese leaders officially announced that China, starting from January 1st, 2021, will finally remove the mandatory pre-market testing on animals. This announcement is of paramount importance if we consider the fact that China will spare hundreds of thousands of animals that were destined to be harmed as part of the cruel animal tests.
How does animal testing work?
Depending on the source animal testing can be from several angles, either medical research or for the development of cosmetics. For their goals to be achieved so many animals have to pay a sad, cruel, unusual, and unnecessary price they do not deserve. These animals are subjected to a confined way of life which is full of untold suffering and isolation, in the end, many of these laboratory animals are subjected to animal testing end up dying.
An example of what happens to these animals is that the fur on their body so that their bare skin can be skin and a range of ingredients for a number of different cosmetic products can be applied on them and the laboratory technicians see if there are any reactions. In other cases, they may pour chemicals into the animal’s eye and leave them to feel a lot of pain without washing the chemicals from their eyes with water. Once more this is done just to see the results.
They can even go up to the extent of manipulating the animal’s genes to test them for all sorts of wild ideas. If you do a little research, you will be shocked to see the amount of products out there that are produced using chemicals that have been tested on animals and you might be even using some of these products.
In recent times many companies have felt the pressure from their customers pushing them to tilt towards cruelty-free practices in their production process and are heeding to it. Today China is making a great statement in this fight by abolishing mandatory pretesting of cosmetics in China.
How does animal testing work in China?.
Animal testing in China is done in two stages: pre-market and post-market testing.
Pre-market testing requires that all products coming from abroad must be tested on animals before they launch the product into their market. So basically if China buys a product let us say from France, they need to have that product tested on animals beforehand.
Post-market testing, on the other hand, is applied when the Chinese officials pull the product from the shelves to test it, of course on animals.
So what will change?
Let us go back to the most important date in this article, June 29, 2020, in which not only the Chinese leaders announced their cruelty-free decision but also The Humane Society International endorsed this by saying, “Effective Jan. 1, 2021, imported ordinary cosmetics such as shampoo, blusher, mascara, and perfume may no longer have to be animal tested for eye and skin irritation in Chinese laboratories. Ordinary cosmetics make up the bulk of personal care products imported to China; so-called “special” cosmetics will still require animal testing.” – HSI.org.
With this new change, brands will start selling in China without the need for mandatory pre-market animal testing as long as they sell ordinary cosmetics which include the majority of skincare, personal care, and makeup products. However, if these brands carry any special use cosmetics, like sunscreen and hair growth products, etc., at that time the brand will fund and pay for animal testing before entering the Chinese market.
Are all brands that carry the label “ordinary” cruelty-free? Well, unfortunately, the answer is No because they will still be subject to post-market testing.
Our final thoughts about the subject
China is still not cruelty-free and that is a fact, but we must acknowledge that removing the mandatory pre-market animal testing at least for everyday cosmetics is a huge step in the right direction. A lot of animals will be saved from the inhuman practices. Please always remember that animals are just like humans they have the ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery. Animals are not here for us but with us and we invite you not to close your eyes on what animals are enduring with their bodies. For now, no brand that is selling in Chinese territory is on the ultimate guide for cruelty-free brands list :
There are a lot of programs dedicated to protect animals and support cruelty-free products and that have banned all tests on animals such as, Leapin bunny and https://www.choosecrueltyfree.org.au/ .
Many vegans and anti-cruelty activists face one issue which that of not knowing where to get a good cosmetic product for their skin which is cruelty-free. If you are one of those then you should check out Takumi Beauty. They are the most ethical cosmetic brand in Japan producing 100% organic cosmetics and have a variety of products on their shelves.
As one who is passionate about animal rights or someone who just discovered the cruel world of animal testing what are your thoughts about animal testing and China taking a bold step towards its abolition? Please leave your comments in the comment section below.