For information, and so as to present both sides of things. My only additional comment is that we can also see here what happens when people don’t talk to each other, and when one adds in America-centric assumptions / prejudices. Be that in innocence or ignorance of other countries, regions, and legislation; or not caring (cultural imperialism); or not bothering to find out (ditto, plus laziness).
Something that bugs me, given the non-American historical origins of the campaign at hand here (= the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection). I’m a person of mixed origins and multiple nationalities, and I’m absolutely resolutely NOT a nationalist (I’m an internationalist, partly for sound Socialist reasons), but the British part of me bristles and rankles at a good and very old British institution and idea (plus the very British version of the 19th-century ideals behind it, of justice and fairness) being taken over, perverted, and banalized.
The worst being twisting international, global, and universal (all good things, for moving towards a cruelty-free world) to mean “American.” That’s the cultural imperialism we’re talking here; aggravated by an over-simplification of the issues at hand, led by simplistic pseudo-thinking, which results in serious flaws in the ideas. Folly.
Historical ignorance is actively dangerous. As well as being a thoroughly bad thing because it gets my goat.
But on a positive note: People: talk to each other: you have more in common than dividing you, especially the crucial factor here about caring about people, animals, planet, and ethics!
Take action: the tools are there at your finger-tips. Well, your tools are your finger-tips: get typing and emailing! See previous posts on this here blog for one instance of this, with Weleda… even though in that case they’re not going to go Leaping Bunny and I’m still going to buy their products, and consider myself to be still buying cruelty-free, because Leaping Bunny’s policy is flawed. Flaws notwithstanding, I still reckon Leaping Bunny to be good and useful. It’s better than nothing, and the world is a better place for it existing, compared to how it would be if The Bunny (or something like it) didn’t exist.
Here’s a rapid digest of useful Leaping Bunny links, for you to the consumer to take action with “your” brands :
- You can contact any company and request that it open up its animal testing policy to scrutiny by joining the Leaping Bunny Program. Please feel free to use this downloadable Sample Letter as a guide http://www.leapingbunny.org/whatcani.php. It is important for companies to hear from consumers like you who want to buy products that are not tested on animals.
- Help us reach our goal of 100,000 signatures by Taking the Leap to go cruelty-free at www.leapingbunnypledge.org
Here’s some correspondence between Leaping Bunny and yours truly (with personally-identifying elements—names, email addresses, telephone numbers—disguised or removed):
From: Ginger O’Rama
Date: Tue, 9 Oct 2012 09:30:25 -0700
To: “email@example.com” <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: question about a brand
Dear CCIC / Leaping Bunny,
I’d be very grateful if you could answer the following for me: what’s the current status of Weleda? I wondered as they are not on your lists of cruelty-free companies, although they do not and indeed never have (in many decades) tested their products on animals. I know that yours is jut one list / index, and not comprehensive, but it is one the main ones available online. I had been wondering as I’ve also separately been in correspondence with Weleda about their move into the mainland-Chinese market, and its attached possibility–not, however, a certainty–that products may / might be tested on animals by the Chinese authorities (as is, indeed, the case for the FDA in the USA).
Many thanks in anticipation,
Subject: Fwd: question about a brand
Date: 12 October, 2012 12:54:15 PM PDT
Thanks for your email. Thank you for contacting the Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics’ (CCIC) Leaping Bunny Program.
At this time, Weleda is not Leaping Bunny certified. As such, I cannot vouch for the animal testing policy of any company that is not certified and listed in the Leaping Bunny Compassionate Shopping Guide. Until a company signs the Leaping Bunny commitment against animal testing, we cannot be sure of its policy on the use of animals, either way.
As you may be aware, many products that claim to be ‘cruelty free’ or ‘not tested on animals’ actually contain ingredients that are tested on animals. Similarly, some companies may state, “We do not test on animals,” when in fact they merely contract other companies to do the testing. Although there are other ‘cruelty free’ lists promoted by individual animal groups, Leaping Bunny is the only Standard that guarantees a product to be free of new animal testing. The Leaping Bunny list offers the most up-to-date list of companies that have agreed in writing to ban animal testing throughout their manufacturing process (including ingredients!). Leaping Bunny requires verifiable assurances from ingredient suppliers, in addition to an unchangeable date after which these ingredients may not be tested on animals.
Companies choose not to join our program for several reasons. It could be because they continue to conduct or commission animal testing for their ingredients or formulations; or that they wish to reserve the right to test on animals in the future. Then again, other companies simply may not realize the importance of joining our program in order to demonstrate their commitment against the use of animals in product testing.
You can contact any company and request that it open up its animal testing policy to scrutiny by joining the Leaping Bunny Program. Please feel free to use this downloadable Sample Letter as a guide http://www.leapingbunny.org/whatcani.php. It is important for companies to hear from consumers like you who want to buy products that are not tested on animals. Your request that they consider joining the Leaping Bunny Standard helps inform them of the public’s desire to end animal testing for cosmetics and household products.
Thank you again for your compassionate consumerism and your interest in protecting animals!
PS: In regards to China, yes, It has become known industry-wide that companies marketing cosmetic and personal care products in the People’s Republic of China are required under new, specific guidelines to test (or be a party to testing of) finished cosmetic products and/or ingredients, so if Weleda is in fact registering their products there to sell, it is likely their products would be subject to animal testing.
Leaping Bunny Program
[telephone number removed]
[email address removed]
Help us reach our goal of 100,000 signatures by Taking the Leap to go cruelty-free at www.leapingbunnypledge.org