The Standard is short for the Corporate Standard of Compassion for Animals, a voluntary pledge that cosmetic, personal care, and/or household product companies based in the US or Canada make to clear animal testing from all stages of product development. A company's ingredient suppliers and/or manufacturers must make the same pledge. The result is a product guaranteed to be 100 percent free of new animal testing. All Leaping Bunny companies must be open to independent audits, and commitments are renewed on an annual basis.
No. Neither the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) nor the US or Canadian Consumer Product Safety Commission require animal testing for cosmetics or household products. There are sufficient existing safety data as well as in vitro alternatives to make animal testing for these products obsolete. While it is true that virtually every ingredient, even water, has been tested on animals in the past, we can help prevent future animal testing.
Virtually every ingredient, even water, has been tested on animals in the past. The Leaping Bunny Program seeks to prevent future animal testing so companies must agree not to conduct any animal testing after a fixed cut-off date. Our Standard is the only one that guarantees a product to be free of new animal testing.
Some companies choose not to join our program because they continue to conduct or commission animal tests for ingredients or formulations, or they wish to reserve the right to test on animals in the future. Other companies simply may not realize the importance of joining our program to demonstrate their commitment against the use of animals in product testing. Unless a company has signed a Leaping Bunny commitment pledging an end to animal testing for ingredients and finished products, we cannot be sure of its policy on the use of animals. You can find Leaping Bunny brands headquartered outside of the US and Canada on the Cruelty Free International search page here.
We can only comment on the cruelty-free status of Leaping Bunny certified companies. At present, in the US and Canada, companies are able to make any cruelty-free claims they wish, without having to back them up. As such, products may claim to be "cruelty-free" or "not tested on animals,” but their claims may only refer to the finished product, since the majority of animal testing occurs at the ingredient level. Similarly, companies may state, “We do not test on animals,” when in fact they merely contract other companies to do the testing. These kinds of statements are often confusing and misleading for consumers.
The Leaping Bunny Program offers not just a list, but a Standard—the only Standard that guarantees a product to be free of new animal testing. While many ingredients have been tested on animals in the past, the Standard is designed to prevent future animal testing and eventually drive animal testing out of the industry completely. In addition, certified companies must recommit to the program annually and must be open to independent audits to ensure their supply chain management system is free of animal testing.
The Leaping Bunny list does not provide information about the composition of ingredients. Since ingredient information is available—and required by law— shoppers can easily discover whether products are vegan or not. For this reason, Leaping Bunny chooses to focus its resources on validating animal testing claims, which is information not readily available to consumers. There are many Leaping Bunny certified companies that are entirely vegan or produce a selection of vegan products. The best place to find out more information is to check a company's FAQ or contact them directly.
Joining the Leaping Bunny Program is free if a brand is headquartered in the US or Canada. However, a company may optionally choose to license the Leaping Bunny Logo for a nominal, one-time fee based on a sliding scale.
All Leaping Bunny certified companies must comply with the same Standard. The only difference is that some companies choose to license the Leaping Bunny Logo for display on their packaging or social media. At any point, a Leaping Bunny company may purchase the Logo for a nominal, one-time fee; however, there is no cost for companies to apply, get approved, and be added to our list of certified companies. Those who choose to use the logo are marked online with a Leaping Bunny Logo.
The logo is recognized in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and throughout much of the European Union. It is the only international logo of its kind!
Leaping Bunny approved products can be found in select department stores, grocery stores, and health food/natural product stores, and many companies offer their complete catalogue online or by mail order. Also, please see our page Where to Buy for specific links to online Leaping Bunny storefronts and other suggestions for finding stores that sell products from Leaping Bunny certified companies.
Why are companies which are owned by non-certified parent companies allowed to be on the Leaping Bunny list?
Leaping Bunny certified brands that were purchased by non-certified parent companies must promise to operate as stand-alone subsidiaries with their own supply chains and must continue to meet the requirements of the Leaping Bunny Standard in order to remain on our list. However, we recognize that there will be many ethical consumers who are concerned about giving their financial support to a parent company that has not committed to ending animal testing. Therefore, we notify consumers of this fact in all versions of our Compassionate Shopping Guide so that they can make fully informed purchasing decisions.
What effect will the cosmetics testing bans in the EU and California, Nevada, and Illinois have on the Leaping Bunny Program?
While we are thrilled that the bans on the sale of cosmetics tested on animals are now law in the European Union, California, Nevada, and Illinois, compassionate shoppers should continue to consult the Leaping Bunny Program for the best information about cruelty-free companies. There are some loopholes to the laws, allowing animal testing to occur in certain circumstances. Shoppers can continue to trust that the Leaping Bunny Standard is stricter than the bans.
It has become known industry-wide that companies registering to import and sell cosmetics and personal care products in Mainland China are required under specific guidelines to test (or be a party to testing of) their products on animals. At this time, any company that registers their products for brick and mortar sales in Mainland China may be removed from the Leaping Bunny Program unless a company can provide proof that they are exempt from animal testing now and anytime in the future. You can be assured that we are looking into any/all possibilities of companies selling in China and will seek to remove companies that are no longer in compliance with the Leaping Bunny Standard. We also continue to monitor this ever-changing regulatory landscape of China for updates to its policies.
At this time, we are not seeing any pre- or post-market testing on animals through the Cross Border E-Commerce (CBEC) channel, and there is nothing in China's current regulatory framework that requires testing on products marketed and sold through CBEC. However, China's policies change often and we are closely monitoring the situation in case new developments arise.
I am writing an article/blog post/social media post about how to be cruelty-free. Can I use the logo?
We are able to grant the use of the Leaping Bunny Logo for editorial purposes, but we would need to see any text associated with our logo in advance before giving permission. Please contact [email protected] with your request.
I have a retail website/salon/boutique that sells products that are Leaping Bunny certified. Can I put the logo on our website?
Unfortunately no. While we appreciate the request, we realize that display of our logo could lead to a misrepresentation of brands that are not certified with Leaping Bunny. We can only license our logo for companies we have certified to be cruelty-free that make/sell products that fit under our Standard.
Do you have a question that isn't answered here?
Just send us an e-mail at [email protected] and we'll get back to you soon!