With the passing of Bill C-47, Budget Implementation Act, 2023, No. 1, the Canadian Parliament has amended the Food and Drugs Act (FDA) to ban cosmetic animal testing. The new legislative changes mean that in Canada, companies will no longer be allowed to test cosmetic products on animals or sell their cosmetics that rely on animal testing data to establish safety. The text received Royal Assent on June 22, 2023, with a coming into force six months later, on December 22, 2023.

Projet de loi C-47 / Bill C-47

According to Health Canada, the practice of testing cosmetics on animals was rarely conducted in Canada. However, by implementing this ban, the country is aligning with the global shift toward animal welfare and is joining a large number of countries that have already taken such measures, including all European Union countries, Australia, the United Kingdom, Brazil, Mexico and South Korea.

The new legislation states that: “No person shall sell a cosmetic unless the person can establish the safety of the cosmetic without relying on data derived from a test conducted on an animal that could cause pain, suffering or injury, whether physical or mental, to the animal.

Some exceptions are listed, in particular when “the test was necessary to meet the requirement in order to sell the product in that country.

Industry and animal protection advocates have worked together over the last several years to advance a cosmetics animal testing ban in Canada. Since this issue was first raised in Parliament through a Private Member’s Bill in the Senate in 2015, our group has met frequently to build a collaborative relationship and to align on the principles with Health Canada while ensuring the ban works within the Canadian regulatory framework. We are very pleased to see the government pass this long overdue legislation,” said Darren Praznik, President and CEO of Cosmetics Alliance Canada.

Cruelty Free International applauds the Canadian Government for taking action to fulfil the wishes of the vast majority of Canadian citizens who supported a ban on animal testing for cosmetics. This has been a unifying issue that has earned cross-party support in Canada and will match the progress we are seeing around the world as consumers, companies, regulators and advocates come together to achieve a common goal of ensuring that animals won’t suffer for the sake of cosmetics anywhere,” also said Monica Engebretson, Head of Public Affairs North America, Cruelty Free International.