Microbeads are plastic particles fewer than five millimeters in size. When used in personal care products like facial scrubs, soaps and toothpaste, the tiny microbeads head straight for our water systems, where they are often ingested by fish or other wildlife. The most recent proposal prohibits the manufacture or sale of personal care products containing plastic microbeads by December 31, 2016, except for over-the-counter drugs. On December 31, 2017, over-the-counter drugs containing plastic microbeads would be prohibited from manufacture or sale as well. Certain microbeads that completely break down in the environment within two weeks in Minnesota’s aquatic environment can be made exempt.
STATUS: Passed the Senate Floor (S.F. 507)