A brief word on animal testing & cosmetics

Labour has announced that all imported cosmetic products that have been tested on animals will be banned. Whether the policy is likely to shift many votes to Labour remains to be seen. Animal testing doesn’t generally appear on the top 10 list of voter’s concerns.

Nonetheless, National’s online proxies have begun a demonisation project that appears to lack much of a basis in fact. National itself doesn’t yet seem to want to talk about the issue, presumably on the basis that advocating for animal rights isn’t a huge vote winner for the right, but that actively advocating for animal torture might just lose a few votes.

The National Party charge is being led instead by David Farrar at Kiwiblog, who lists 181 cosmetics companies and brand names that use animal testing. The thing is that the list contains companies/brands that undertake any animal testing at all. It doesn’t mean that all products by that company/brand will be razed from New Zealand shelves. The fact that Mr Farrar fails to identify is that the EU already has such a ban, as does India, Israel and Norway. That means that every cosmetic that is stocked in the EU is able to be stocked in New Zealand. As National Anti-Vivisection Society spokesman Stephen Manson told the NZ Herald:

“There might be a few products, but it’s not like you’re going to see shelves emptying. The EU’s a huge market and anything that’s sold there can be imported here. I can’t see it having a massive impact as far as consumer choice goes.”

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