Avon Products, Inc. & Consumer Safety: Commitment to Science…Respect for Animal Welfare
Respect for animal welfare is a cornerstone of Avon’s product safety philosophy. In fact, Avon was the first major cosmetic company to end animal testing nearly 25 years ago and we do not test on animals today. Instead, we use non-animal product safety testing methods.
Unfortunately, a few countries require additional safety testing, which may include animal testing. Avon, in partnership with other organizations, works to help advance government acceptance of alternative non-animal testing methods. But if a compromise cannot be reached, we must comply with the testing required by local law. Animal testing is an issue faced by all global beauty companies.
The safety of our consumers is of primary concern to Avon. We are committed to selling only safe products, using only safe ingredients in our cosmetics products and complying with applicable regulations in the countries in which Avon products are sold. Alongside this commitment we also have a deep respect for animal welfare.
In June 1989 Avon announced a permanent end to animal testing of our products. Avon was the first major cosmetic company in the world to end animal testing. For more than 25 years Avon has substantiated the safety of its products without animal testing.
Avon does not conduct nor request animal testing in order to substantiate the safety or efficacy of any of its products or raw ingredients. Our approach to safety evaluation utilizes extrapolations from existing data as well as from computational modeling, in vitro (test tube/cell culture) testing and clinical tests on human volunteers. In some countries, some products may be required by law to undergo additional safety testing, and this may include animal tests. In these instances, Avon has attempted to persuade the requesting authority to accept non-animal test data.
Avon has been active in the development, implementation and acceptance of alternative test methods since the 1980’s, working to identify and develop new testing alternatives with other cosmetic companies and with external organizations. Avon scientists have long participated as members of the Scientific Advisory Panel of the Institute of the InVitro Sciences, Inc., a non-profit research and testing organization dedicated to the advancement of in vitro (non-animal) methods worldwide and Avon is a Founding Sponsor of the American Society for Cellular Computational Toxicology. Similarly, Avon continues to support the Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments (FRAME) in the UK, the Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing at Johns Hopkins University in the US, and the European Partnership for Alternative Approaches to Animal Testing.
We are encouraged to see that China recently eliminated the animal testing requirement for certain products. However, China still requires testing on “special use” products (sunscreens, anti-pigmentation/whitening product, deodorant, fitness/slimming products, breast beautifying products, depilatories, hair growth products, hair perm and hair dyes).
Our efforts were recognized as far back as 1993 at the World Congress on Alternatives and Animal Use in the Life Sciences: Education, Research and Testing. Also in 1993, Avon was presented with a Recognition Award from the Johns Hopkins University Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing in the United States for our dedication to the principles of the 3 R’s (refinement, reduction, replacement) and the use of alternative tests for safety evaluation.
Reflecting the same commitment to animal welfare, Avon Foundation for Women funding may not be used to fund breast cancer research studies involving animals. The Avon Foundation’s guidelines apply only to studies funded by the Avon Foundation and do not impact other research underway at these same institutions. Through 2015, Avon global philanthropy, led by the Avon Foundation, had donated over $1 billion in more than 50 countries for causes most important to women, with a focus on funding breast cancer research and access to care through the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade, and efforts to reduce domestic and gender violence through the Speak Out Against Domestic Violence program.
Click here for Q&A regarding Avon’s Commitment to Animal Welfare.