As an ethical shopper, you will probably want to choose cleaning products that are eco-friendly. But what about animal testing? How can you find out if your cleaning products are tested on animals? Just Helpers investigates.
Investigating if your cleaning products are tested on animals is a more difficult and complex question that you might imagine. Household cleaning products contain many different ingredients, some of which have been around for a long time. So while the final cleaning product in your shopping basket may not have been tested on animals, there’s every chance that one or more of the ingredients has been involved in animal testing at some time in the past.
The Law in the UK
In March 2015 The UK government announced that animal testing on household products was to be banned, This included all finished products such as detergents, laundry products, and air fresheners.
This sounds promising, but the RSPCA state that there has been no animal testing for this purpose in the UK since 2010.
In addition, the ban included testing on any chemical when more than half if it was expected to be used as an ingredient in household products “unless there is a legal requirement or an exceptional justification can be made in advance.”
This exception is an important one, because it means that the ban does not prevent the testing of chemicals on animals to meet requirements such as REACH (European Chemicals Regulation.)
This means that many of the common chemical ingredients in our household cleaning products may still be tested on animals. Plus, animals may have been used in testing ingredients in the past.
So, if we are concerned whether our cleaning products are tested on animals, how can we choose which to buy?
Look for the Leaping Bunny
The Leaping Bunny is a programme from Cruelty Free International, and can apply to household products and beauty products. To be approved to use the Leaping Bunny Mark, brands must set a cut-off date after which neither they nor their suppliers, will conduct or commission animal testing for ingredients, raw materials or the final product. They must also monitor their suppliers to make sure they stick to this, and be open to independent checks.
You can find out more about the Leaping Bunny Standard here and search for your favourite brands to see if they are Leaping Bunny approved here.
If you want to avoid all animal derived ingredients, as well as animal testing, looking out for products approved by the Vegan Society. To meet the Vegan Society Standard, the development or manufacture of the product must not involve or have involved testing on any sort on animals , either by the company itself or n it’s behalf, or by “parties over which the company has effective control”.
We looked at our favourite brands of cleaning products to see how they measured up.
There is extensive information about ingredients here.
Method have great eco and cruelty free credentials, with both the Leaping Bunny, and recognised by PETA as cruelty free. Their website states that all their products are vegan friendly. Ingredients are listed on the bottle and on the website.
Approved by Cruelty Free International (Leaping Bunny), Vegan Society and the Vegetarian Society, Astonish are proud of their cruelty free values. Every product on their website has a list of ingredients, and safety information.
Ecover are also approved by the Leaping Bunny Programme and do not test finished products or ingredients on animals, or commission others to test on their behalf. While they have no plans to apply to the Vegan Society to be certified, they consider their products to be vegan friendly.
Splosh products are not tested on animals and are vegan friendly. Detailed information about ingredients is listed on the website for each product and is easy to find.
Do you look out for cruelty free cleaning products? Let us know your favourites.
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