Investigation Time: Aldi, Reckitt Benckiser & Edgewell Personal Care

Hi everyone, it’s time to put three more companies under the microscope and check out their animal-testing policies and their vegan status.

AldiFirst up we have Aldi. Aldi is a widely known supermarket that makes a lot of own brand products including skincare, oral care and household products. It is also the closest store to where I live and where I most commonly did my shopping so I thought it was worth investigating. I had head from a vegan friend that they were cruety-free so I was surprised by their responses:

“Thank you for taking the time to email us today.
ALDI is committed to animal welfare. We do not accept animal testing for any of our products other than where legally required. It is our policy never to commission animal testing or to knowingly allow it to be undertaken on our behalf. We introduced our ban on animal testing of products and ingredients in 1992 for cosmetic products and in 2005 for detergents and cleaning products, ahead of legislation and before many of our competitors.”

Naturally I asked them to define exactly what they meant by “other than where legally required.”

“Thank you for your response.

I am unable to confirm this information as we only deal with the UK and Ireland. Please may I redirect you to our Corporate Website where you will find a variety of information regarding animal welfare and lots more.

https://corporate.aldi.co.uk/en/responsibility/resources-for-our-products/animal-welfare/.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to contact us. We value your custom and hope that you will continue to shop with us.”

I found this answer pretty unhelpful and the website didn’t give me any further information. I tried to contact the head office but all I got was an automatic response in German and never heard from them again. This is why I not labelling Aldi as cruelty-free. “Other than where required by law” is always a red flag and I tried very hard to get a proper response from them but couldn’t so I do not belive they are a cruelty-free company.

reckitt-benckiser-1-728Next up we will be looking at Reckitt Benckiser. That is the parent company to:

  • Mortein
  • Woolite
  • Veet
  • Harpic
  • Calgon
  • Finish
  • Lysol
  • Mucinex
  • French’s
  • Airwick
  • Nurofen
  • Vanish
  • Durex
  • Clearasil
  • Dettol
  • Strepsils
  • Cillit Bang
  • Scholl
  • Gaviscon

A long list of brands to cover all at once! This was their response to my email:

“Dear Pam Ryan

Thank you for your recent email regarding our Animal Testing Policy.

Please see below for a copy of our Global Policy Statement on Animal Testing

Reckitt Benckiser will not use animal testing on any of our products, or on any raw materials, unless indicated by national or international regulatory authorities Reckitt Benckiser will actively support the development, validation, use and acceptance of alternative methods that reduce, refine or replace the use of animals in safety evaluation.

It will be the Policy of Reckitt Benckiser to:

  1. Conduct animal testing only where indicated by legislative or regulatory requirements, where no approved or accepted alternative testing procedure exists, or where no established information exists upon which an adequate determination of hazard can be made.
  2. Minimise the use of animals in required safety testing to the greatest extent possible while ensuring that a valid study is conducted.
  3. Conduct all required animal testing only in expert, qualified contract testing facilities in a humane and responsible manner, complying with the best-accepted standards and all applicable regulatory requirements for animal welfare.
  4. Continually evaluate and appropriately use alternative techniques for hazard evaluation which reduce or eliminate the use of animals, and actively support research in this area.
  5. Advocate regulatory acceptance of validated alternative hazard evaluation methods which reduce, refine or replace the use of animal models both directly and through trade associations, professional societies and consumer groups.
  6. Utilize applicable existing and scientifically valid data when conducting hazard evaluations and risk assessments.

RESPONSIBILITIES:

The Global Director, Regulatory, Safety & Environmental Services is accountable for the formulation, publication and monitoring of this Policy.

Product Safety personnel within the Regulatory, Safety & Environmental Services group are responsible for the performance of safety evaluations and risk assessments. It is the individual responsibility of all Reckitt Benckiser employees to act in accordance with the provisions of this Policy.

COMPLIANCE

The Global Director, Regulatory, Safety & Environmental Services will be responsible for ensuring that any indicated animal testing conducted in support of safety evaluations and risk assessments on Reckitt Benckiser products complies with the provisions of this Policy.

Thank you once again for taking the time to contact us.”

Basically, not cruelty-free. Tthere’s a lot in there about not testing unless required by law, which means that they sell in places where animal-testing is a requirement. Looking at point no.3 in particular, there’s no such thing as humane animal-testing. A company is either cruelty-free or it’s not and this one is not in my opinion.

Edgewell-logo-2015And finally, we have Edgewel Personal Care. This is the parent company of:

  • Schick
  • Wilkinson Sword
  • Personna
  • Edge
  • Skintimate
  • Banana Boat
  • Hawaiian Tropic
  • Playtex
  • Carefree
  • Stayfree
  • b.
  • Wet Ones
  • Litter Genie

They didn’t answer me in-email but attatched their full animal-testing policy for me to read:

“Edgewell Personal Care Company Policy Statement on Animal Testing

At Edgewell, we manufacture and sell a wide range of consumer products. It is our policy to avoid animal testing on our products whenever possible. The majority of our products, including all of those in the following product lines, are never tested on animals:

  • Razor and blade products such as Schick, Wilkinson Sword, and Personna;
  • Shaving gels and creams such as Edge, Hydro and Skintimate;
  • Skin care products such as Banana Boat, Hawaiian Tropic, and Wet Ones;
  • Feminine care pads and liners such as Stayfree and Carefree; • Infant care products

Edgewell only performs animal testing on products where required to do so by law, or where no acceptable alternative exists to assess the safety of a product for consumer use.

Consumer Product Safety Testing

The significant majority of our safety testing is carried out through non-animal procedures, and our research and development teams strive to adopt alternative testing methods where it is possible to avoid animal testing.

Testing Required by Law

While U.S., EU and other laws are evolving on the animal testing issue, there are still jurisdictions, including the U.S., where animal testing is the only accepted method of obtaining regulatory approval to market certain products. We submit non-animal based testing results prior to or concurrently with animal testing results where possible in order to educate regulators on non-animal alternative methods that provide the same or better toxicological results. Additionally, we participate in efforts to improve the awareness among regulators about non- animal alternatives.”

I respect that they make the effort but they clearly do still test on animals so I cannot label them cruelty-free. Yet again, another company is selling their products where animal testing is required by law unfortunately.

That is a lot of brands to add to the “avoid” list today but fear not, there are so many more cruelty-free companies out there to shop from.

Have a great Wednesday!

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3 thoughts on “Investigation Time: Aldi, Reckitt Benckiser & Edgewell Personal Care

  1. What we really need is a definitive list of cruelty free Australian products, items that are found in all oz supermarkets. There are plenty of lists out there, but contain 100s if item not available, and never heard of here. With aldi products, yes the “unless legally required” raises red flags for me as well. But I think if the product is made in oz, there would be no such requirement, unlike everything made in China. is poked in a bunnies eye.

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  2. Apparently B. which is a brand exclusive to superdrug doesn’t test on animals. So not all brands the company makes are tested on animals sort of like Loreal and bodyshop as they own Body Shop

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    1. Actually B. and b. are two different brands; confusing I know! B. is owned by Superdrug and like all Superdrug own brands is cruelty free, but b. is owned by Edgewell and as such, isn’t. I actually submitted this inquiry for Wilkinson Sword in particular and got a response from Edgewell, the parent company, with their blanket policy for all their brands. I hope that clarifies things a bit. 🙂

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