Use of microbeads in cosmetics and personal care products (UK)

Open Consultation on Banning the use of microbeads in cosmetics and personal care products

The Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has published on 20th December 2016 an Open Consultation on banning the use of microbeads in cosmetics and personal care products. This Consultation seeks views on proposals to ban the manufacture and sale of cosmetics and personal care products containing microbeads which may cause harm to the marine environment. The consultation also seeks to gather evidence on the extent of the environmental impacts of microbeads found in other products, to inform future UK actions to protect the marine environment.

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This consultation aims to address microplastic particles which may cause harm to the marine environment. The Department is not seeking comments on wider forms of marine litter such as micro-sized particles of non-plastic litter.

The proposals would extend and apply to the UK including Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. They do not apply to overseas territories.

This consultation has particular relevance to:

  • groups or individuals who use the sea for any purpose, or have an interest in it, including business users of the sea
  • people that use products containing microbeads and those businesses responsible for manufacturing and selling those products
  • businesses using primary microplastics or creating secondary microplastics
  • producers, manufacturers, re-processors and retailers of plastic packaging
  • national and local interest groups such as environmental and recreational non-governmental organisations and industry federations
  • governments in other states who may be considering their own bans on microbeads in cosmetics and personal care products
  • academic research institutions

The Consultation ends on 28th February 2017. For methods to respond consult the original document.

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