Bitterwallet cleans up Sainsbury's soap drama

30 October 2008

You can ask Bitterwallet anything at all, and we'll always do our utmost to deliver. Red or brown sauce on fish finger sandwiches? Red, obviously. Salt first, or vinegar? Vinegar, because then the salt will stick to your food. What about ambiguous labelling on toiletries? Um.

I've just noticed the on the label of the Sainsbury's Basics Shower Gel that turned up in the shower the other day it says:

"Sainsbury's are against animal testing and fund research into alternatives."

What this label doesn't say is that the product isn't tested on animals, which I'd expect it to say outright rather than in this hazy way. Does this mean that Sainsbury's do test these products on animals and just pay a bit towards "research into alternatives"? Maybe Bitterwallet could contact Sainsbury to clarify for me...

Ducky

An excellent question, given the wording is hardly clear cut. As Ducky says, it could mean that Sainsbury's are squirting cheap conditioner into the swollen eyes of hamsters but aren't particularly happy about doing so. I put that exact wording* to Sainsbury's earlier this afternoon, and here's the reply:

* not that exact, to be exact

We do not test any of our own label cosmetics or toiletries on animals, and no ingredients or raw materials in our products have been tested on animals by us or on our behalf since 1988. Instead, to test the safety of our health and beauty products, we typically use human volunteers or other methods involving cell cultures, and our suppliers employ toxicologists.

We financially support the Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments (FRAME), whose scientists are developing new non animal-based tests to satisfy UK and EU safety and legal requirements for new products. Our aims are to ensure the safety of our products and to fulfill all legal requirements in the area while, at the same time, acting ethically towards animals.

God news, Ducky. You can continue to use your bargain toiletries in the safe knowledge they've been scrubbed into the eyes of old ladies and amoeba, but not rabbits or cats.

What do you think?

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