HC Deb 10 June 1998 vol 313 cc565-6W
Mr. Lansley

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what was the amount spent by his Department in the two years prior to 1998–99 on research into alternatives to testing cosmetic products on animals. [44665]

Mr. George Howarth

Each year, the Home Office makes a budget available to the Animal Procedures Committee to fund research into replacement, reduction and refinement alternatives to the use of animals in all types of scientific procedures, not just cosmetic testing. In 1996–97, this budget amounted to £242,000 and in 1997–98 to £182,000.

Applications are invited from those who are seeking sponsorship for projects relating to the development or implementation of alternatives. The Animal Procedures Committee, through its Research Sub-Committee, provides independent advice about which of these projects should be funded. During the last two years, no applications have been received for research relating to alternatives to the use of animals in cosmetic product testing.

Cosmetic testing accounts for about 0.1 per cent. of all scientific procedures using animals in the United Kingdom. Available funds are best targeted at research projects which will benefit more animals.

The cosmetic industry itself allocates considerable resources to the development of alternative tests, partly to meet the requirements of the 6th amendment to the European Communities Cosmetics Directive 93/35/EEC. The companies licensed to use animals in testing finished cosmetic products agreed in November 1997 to end, with immediate effect, this work in the United Kingdom.

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