Is animal testing really necessary? Activists argue that technology can already replace animal testing completely, and that using animals is unnecessary and cruel. Proponents, on the other hand, point out that animal testing is strictly regulated in the European Union, and is used only for scientific research.
In 2013, the EU implemented a complete ban on of all cosmetics that had been tested on animals. Two years later, in June 2015, the European Commission rejected proposals in a European Citizens’ Initiative to also ban animal testing in scientific research. The Commission argued that it hopes to eventually phase out animal testing completely, but that it is currently a “complete ban on animal research in the EU would be premature and it would risk chasing out biomedical research from Europe.”
Rodents (primarily mice and rats) together with rabbits represented 80% of the animals used for testing purposes in the European Union in 2011. Reptiles, amphibians, and fish were the next most used group at 12.4%, followed by birds at 5.9%. Primates represented 0.05% of all animal testing in the EU.
Should animal testing be banned? Or would it risk scaring off biomedical research companies? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!