Were Animals Poisoned in Unauthorised Chemical Tests? PETA Complaint Triggers EU Inquiry

Posted by on January 24, 2013 | Permalink

In 2011, we learned that animals may have been poisoned and killed in toxicity tests that should never have taken place, as part of the EU’s chemical testing programme, REACH – the largest chemical testing programme in the world.

REACH rules state that animal tests can only be conducted as a “last resort”. But in 2011, a report from the European Chemical Agency (ECHA), which is responsible for policing REACH, showed that tens of thousands of animals were used in tests that could have been avoided. Yet ECHA has taken no action to investigate these cases – in our view, a clear sign that it’s not doing its job properly or giving animals the consideration that they deserve.

The European Ombudsman investigates complaints about maladministration in EU institutions and agencies. After corresponding with ECHA and the European Commission about the avoidable tests and receiving unsatisfactory answers, we informed the Ombudsman of our concerns and asked the office to investigate further – and we’re relieved to say that there is going to be an inquiry into our claims of maladministration.

This maladministration may have already cost thousands of animals their lives, but millions more are at stake. We’re hoping that this inquiry will compel ECHA to fulfil its obligations and ensure that no more innocent lives are lost in unnecessary tests.

Want more details? Check out this news release.