Australia plans to ban animal testing for cosmetics
Australia’s federal government has pledged a ban on the testing of cosmetic ingredients on animals in Australia and the sale of cosmetic products and ingredients that have been tested on animals outside of Australia.
Australia is now on track to join New Zealand, which took steps to amend its Animal Welfare Act in March last year; New Zealand now prohibits animal testing for finished cosmetics and ingredients intended exclusively for use in cosmetics.
Australia’s Assistant Minister for Health, Key Wyatt, and Federal Liberal Member for La Trobe, Jason Wood, pledged that the Coalition would ban the testing of cosmetics ingredients on animals.
The announcement received support from animal campaign organisations such as Humane Research Australia and Humane Society International (HSI), which have both been campaigning for a ban for two years. However, concern still hangs over the sale of cosmetics products tested on animals.
Hannah Stuart, for the #BeCrueltyFree Australia campaign, said: “Without a legislative sales ban there is nothing to prevent cosmetics animal testing taking place here in Australia, or overseas during development of products sold in our shops. Such bans are already in place across the European Union, Israel and India, and there is now growing worldwide momentum towards ending the marketing of cruel cosmetics. A similar legislative ban in Australia will be good for animals, consumers and science, and it’s what the overwhelming majority of Australian citizens want.”
P&G sells three hair care brands to Henkel
P&G has announced an agreement to sell the hair care brands Pert, Shamtu and Blendax to German consumer goods player Henkel.
The transaction is said to boost Henkel’s footprint in the emerging markets of Africa/Middle East and Eastern Europe. Key countries tied into the sale include Russia, Saudi Arabia and Turkey. In May 2014 Henkel bought the Pert brand from P&G in Latin America.
Hans Van Bylen, Executive Vice President and responsible for Henkel’s Beauty Care business, said: “We are convinced that emerging markets will continue to generate above-average growth in the future. These brands are a perfect fit for our Beauty Care business. They will strengthen our existing core category hair care and provide a platform for further expansion.”
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Terms of the sale were not disclosed, however, in fiscal year 2015, sales of the acquired brands reached almost US$100m. The sale is subject to approval from anti-trust authorities.
Illegal skin lightening creams sold in London
Illegal skin whitening creams have been found for sale on the UK high street. A BBC investigation discovered products containing hydroquinone for sale at several independent cosmetics stores in London. Hydroquinone is linked to liver and nerve damage.
An undercover investigation found skin lightening products at Shaba Hair and Cosmetics stores across the capital. The Director of the retail outlets, Banaras Hussain, was prosecuted for selling the creams in three stores: Enfield, Dalston and Peckham. He is currently awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to 33 offences linked to the Dalston store. The BBC discovered that a number of Shaba outlets continued to stock the products even after his arrest.
Shaba Hair and Cosmetics in Peckham was said to have sold a BBC undercover researcher a jar of Caro Light cream for £9.99. The cream contained 4.6% hydroquinone. Three creams sold in the store were found to contain the ingredient despite it not having it listed on the label.
Whitening ingredients have been banned in a number of regions. Most recently Ivory Coast outlawed skin-whitening creams in May 2015.
When? Feb 10-13, 2016
VIVANESS is the international trade fair for natural cosmetics and is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2016. VIVANESS is the meeting place for natural cosmetics manufacturers, natural cosmetics buyers, natural cosmetics traders and service providers from the international cosmetics sector. All the products exhibited at VIVANESS have either been certified by a recognized natural cosmetics certifier or the individual ingredients have been checked for compliance with the VIVANESS criteria.
Hair dyes removed from shelves after fertility concerns
Three hair dye products have been removed from sale following an alert from the European Commission’s Rapid Alert System, RAPEX.
Bigen Permanent Powder Hair Colour; Blasol Powder Permanent Hair Colouring Formula and JR Beauty Organics Permanent Powder Hair Colour were found to contain sodium perborate. The substance is known to be toxic if inhaled and can cause eye damage and respiratory irritation. The ingredient may also harm fertility.
RAPEX says the inclusion of this ingredient in these products means that they do not comply with the Cosmetic Products Regulation and must be withdrawn from sale. All three products are classified as posing a “serious risk”. In the alert, RAPEX said: “The list of ingredients indicates that the hair-dye contains sodium perborate. Sodium perborate is toxic if inhaled [and] may damage fertility or the unborn child.”
In the UK, Tesco and Sainsbury’s say that they have already removed the items from their shelves but it is not clear how long they have been available for or where the products originated. A spokesperson from Tesco said: “Customer safety is always our top priority, so we have taken the precautionary measure of issuing a product recall for the Bigen hair dye range.”
A spokesperson from the Chartered Trading Standards Institute commented: “Sodium perborate is a prohibited substance under cosmetic products safety regulations because it can cause harm to fertility and unborn children.”