The proposed State regulations restricting microbeads are still in play.  It is concerning since:

  1. the deadlines for phase-out are very short and unworkable for industry,
  2. some proposed definitions may include non-rinse off products, and most importantly
  3. the definitions of microbeads vary (microplastics vs. microbeads, no specification of particle size) and could inadvertently include other polymers that do not have the same environmental impact.

The Federal law is in place but its preemption is being challenged by local governments that have pending legislation. Meanwhile, companies in the industry are taking a public stand on the phase-out of microbeads, generally based on definitions in the Illinois state and Federal legislation. A private website has posted excerpts of various statements from different companies throughout the US and Europe. You can find it here: http://www.beatthemicrobead.org/en/industry

And as examples directly from brand owners:

  1. From Johnson and Johnson: http://www.safetyandcarecommitment.com/ingredient-info/other/microbeads
  2. From P&G: http://www.pg.com/en_US/sustainability/safety/ingredients/microbeads.shtml

As with all regulatory issues, companies should have a strategy to comply with the current regulations, and focus on the supply chain for the future.  Call us if you need our help on a streamlined approach.