Executive Briefings

Canada Acts to Ban Microbeads in Consumer Products

Canada's federal government has officially listed microbeads as a toxic substance, giving it the ability to ban the plastic beads used in cleansers.

An online notice says the tiny plastic beads commonly found in facial and body scrubs is now listed as a toxic substance under the Environmental Protection Act, which gives the government the option to control their use or institute an outright ban.

But microbeads are already on the way out.

The online notice says of the 14 companies that make up the Canadian Cosmetic, Toiletry and Fragrance Association - the heaviest users of microbeads in Canada - five have already stopped using microbeads in their products and nine more will follow suit by 2018 or 2019.

Parliamentarians voted unanimously last year to remove microbeads from the market amid concern and evidence of the plastic accumulating in lakes and rivers, harming the environment and aquatic life.

The move followed similar efforts to ban the substance in the United States and Europe.

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An online notice says the tiny plastic beads commonly found in facial and body scrubs is now listed as a toxic substance under the Environmental Protection Act, which gives the government the option to control their use or institute an outright ban.

But microbeads are already on the way out.

The online notice says of the 14 companies that make up the Canadian Cosmetic, Toiletry and Fragrance Association - the heaviest users of microbeads in Canada - five have already stopped using microbeads in their products and nine more will follow suit by 2018 or 2019.

Parliamentarians voted unanimously last year to remove microbeads from the market amid concern and evidence of the plastic accumulating in lakes and rivers, harming the environment and aquatic life.

The move followed similar efforts to ban the substance in the United States and Europe.

Read Full Article