South Korea to accept non-animal tests for functional cosmetics

Proposal represents a major shift in Korean policy concerning functional cosmetics

Korea’s Ministry of Food and Drug Safety has announced a policy proposal to formally recognise non-animal test results for assuring the safety of sunscreens, anti-wrinkle creams and other functional cosmetics. The proposal is open to public comment until 26 December and represents a major shift in Korean policy concerning functional cosmetics, which require pre-market evaluation by MFDS and testing of both medicated and non-medicated ingredients alike. Animal testing for ordinary cosmetics is already non-mandatory.

“This is the second major move towards non-animal testing that Korea has taken in as many months and that pace of change is commendable,” commented Troy Seidle, Humane Society International’s Director of Research & Toxicology. “The creation of a Korea Centre for Alternatives, announced in October, demonstrated a commitment to cutting edge science. Allowing cosmetics companies to now take advantage of these new techniques by replacing unreliable animal tests is a welcome development. With similar moves towards alternatives in China and India responding to our call for a sales ban on animal-tested cosmetics, we are delighted to see our Be Cruelty-Free campaign across Asia spearheading real change for animals in our ongoing efforts to end cosmetics cruelty.”