This is an open question, so if you can help me in my search for an answer please leave a comment.
I recently received an email from the press office at L'Oreal asking if I would like to try some of their new products. I replied with my standard reply to such companies :-
"Thank you for getting in contact.
We do not knowingly use any products tested on animals and as L'Oreal still features very highly on the animal testing list (PETA) I need to check where L'Oreal stands on animal testing."
I received this statement in reply:-
"Thank you for your recent enquiry requesting further clarification of L’Oréal’s policy on animal testing.
L’Oréal voluntarily stopped using animal testing for the evaluation of its entire range of finished cosmetic products in 1989. It was possible to do this due to the considerable time and effort we have invested for over two decades, including developments of databases on ingredient toxicity profiles and the results of a large-scale programme carried out over several years to develop appropriate in vitro methods such as Episkin. Moreover, we have also co-operated with our competitors in this common objective.
We are totally committed to a future without tests on animals. We comply with all EU and national laws in ensuring the absolute safety of our products. These are positions we share with The Body Shop whose policy of not using any ingredients that have been tested or retested on animals for cosmetics purposes since the end of 1990 remains unchanged.
The industry and many opinion formers believe that this common objective of eradication of animal testing for safety purposes can only be totally achieved through research, development and validation of alternative methods and approaches. L’Oréal has invested more than any other company in this endeavour during the last 25 years. This is a fact that was recognised and endorsed by Anita Roddick, the founder of The Body Shop and campaigner against animal testing for cosmetics. Below is some more detailed information regarding this subject that you may find helpful.
Some of our achievements to date:
in the early 1980s, L’Oréal developed Episkin - reconstructed human skin models complete with a barrier function. These have since been routinely used to obtain a better understanding of the biological mechanisms of skin and to evaluate the efficacy and tolerance of our products. Some of these models can be used to study skin pigmentation or its immune response;
a specific protocol, using the company’s reconstructed epidermis model Episkin, has been validated by the European Centre for Validation of Alternative Methods (ECVAM) for the purposes of evaluating skin irritancy and corrosion. This method provides a full replacement for the corresponding animal test;
our researchers have also developed the first epidermal model containing Langerhans cells which play a decisive role in the skin’s allergic response. Having been a pilot for a European Commission programme, similar models are currently being studied as alternative methods to skin allergy tests; and
the acquisition by L’Oréal of the tissue engineering company, Skin Ethic, is further testimony to our continued commitment to the development of alternative methods to replace animal testing.
L’Oréal is an active member of the European Partnership for Alternative Approaches to animal testing (EPAA) led by the European Commission, and we are committed, in our field of expertise, to progressing and promoting this programme.
For your reference, please visit the website for Episkin - http://www.invitroskin.com/_int/_en/.
Thank you again for contacting us and giving us the opportunity to respond
So please tell me what am I missing. Is this statement cleverly worded and misleading or have they actually stopped testing? and if they really stopped in 1989 why has PETA not picked up on this?