The German Welfare Federation and the Animal Welfare Academy have jointly published a report which claims that EU legislation concerning the protection of animals used in scientific testing is not being fully implemented, or consistently implemented across the EU, when carrying out toxicological studies for risk assessments of chemicals. Some of the main areas where such risk assessments are required are for REACH and biocides.
There are many alternative methods for risk assessments which do not involve animal testing, and the authors list a number of possible reasons why these are not being adopted more quickly, including a shortage of resources in the implementation of new techniques and possible misinformation regarding the applicability or validity of some of the alternative methods.
Many groups across the EU have made representations regarding the continued use of animal testing when it may be considered to be unnecessary. This report highlights this position and draws attention to the alternative testing methods which exist, and have been developed by innovative scientists in order to remove the need for animal testing.
These methods, where applicable, should be used wherever possible, the EU authorities need to be clear on which of these are acceptable, and those laboratories who have developed them and can carry them out need to do more to promote them.
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