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SPCA New Zealand does not condone animal testing

Monday, 17 June, 2013

SPCA New Zealand National President Bob Kerridge remains opposed to animal testing despite the recommendation of the Psychoactive Substances Interim Expert Advisory Committee to allow severely restricted animal tests.

“Let me be very clear about this: I oppose animal testing in any form and my presence on this Committee does not alter that position,” says Mr Kerridge. “Nor does it mean I condone the use of animal testing.

“I have made the Committee very aware of the many proven alternatives to animal testing that exist, and they are also aware of the Society’s submissions seeking a complete ban on animal testing for this purpose. However, I am but one voice. 

“In the end, the Committee has advised the Minister that some animal testing may be necessary but that it should be limited, and all possible alternatives should be fully explored.

“It should be remembered that animal welfare issues were initially ruled beyond the scope of submissions on the Bill because of fears they would hold up this urgently needed legislation. So we have achieved a partial success by influencing the Committee to severely restrict the animal testing allowed by promoting the use of alternative, non-animal, tests.

“Rest assured that the Royal New Zealand SPCA remains opposed to animal testing and will continue to actively campaign against its use in New Zealand.”

Mr Kerridge was one of a small group of experts invited last month to advise on the safety testing regime for so-called ‘legal highs’ as part of the Psychoactive Substances Bill. Other members of the Committee included Otago University Associate Professor of Medicine Richard Robson, Auckland University Associate Professor of Pharmacology Malcolm Tingle, ESR Bio-analytical Programmes Manager Paul Fitzmaurice, and University of Auckland Senior Tutor in Pharmacy Law Sanya Ram.