India has become the very first country in South Asia to ban testing on animals within the cosmetic industry.

It’s such great news to hear that animals will no longer have to suffer or even be involved in the process of cosmetic production in India.

PETA have been campaigning to end the testing of household products and their ingredients on animals in India for quite some time now, so it’s great to hear that their beliefs along with their campaigning has now come to fruition.

Even though a starting date has not been mentioned in this report as to when this ruling will be enforced, the ruling does seem to imply that any cosmetic manufacturer who carries out  animal testing will face large fines. This new ruling will be enforced by the Drugs and Cosmetics Act and the Animal Cruelty Act.

It doesn’t end there either. The report also states that the use of modern non-animal alternative tests have become mandatory, replacing invasive tests on animals. In simpler terms this means that any cosmetic manufacturer that wishes to test a new cosmetic ingredient or finalised product for that matter, must have the approval from India’s regulator Central Drug Standards Control Organisation. The manufacturer will then be given approval to test only after complying with the BIS non-animal standards.

In a statement on the website, Alokparna Sengupta, Humane Society International (HSI)/India’s Be Cruelty-Free campaign manager, said: "This is a major victory for countless animals that will no longer be made to suffer, and it is a proud moment for India as it becomes the first country in South Asia to end cosmetics cruelty."

This is a huge step forward for India. As India grows and grows and slowly becomes one of the world’s largest economies with people buying more cosmetic products, it’s a nice thought that  animals will not be harmed in the process. It still shocks me that in 2013 companies are still carrying out animal testing for cosmetic products, so this news is warmly received.

There are a number of companies and whole countries that still test newly created cosmetic products or ingredients on animals. Hopefully this will be the start of a global switch in the manufacturing processes and testing, I for one have my fingers crossed.

Image Credit: V.V. Krishnan

Alison Claire