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Toxic Plastic Fish...Yum!!!

Updated on June 1, 2016

Be Ware!

What most are unaware of though, is toxins arising from our bathroom or kitchen, in the fish we eat.

Certain plastics are thrown away and break down. Others are created as a microscopic for a particular purpose. These are known as, "microbeads". These microbeads are irregularly shaped and multi-colored. They measure approximately 1mm in size. Currently it is estimated 2.2 million pounds of these microbeads are floating on the surface of the North Atlantic Ocean. This is the equivalent of 79 million water bottles floating between New Jersey and Main to Europe and Northern Africa.

-James Goetz (New Jersey)

Proud to Be

At this point, only New Jersey, Connecticut, California, and Illinois have signed into the ban of microbeads in products. Unfortunately, even with these bans in place, large loopholes are used rendering the laws created to protect us virtually ineffective.

While companies such as Proctor and Gamble and Johnson and Johnson say they intend to phase out microbeads in their products over the next few years, others such as GlowGenics Organic Baby Care have never used such toxic products in the first place.


How Clean Are You, Really?

Do You Use Products with Microbeads?

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Don't Feed the Fish

The microbeads act as a sponge for toxins such as PCB's and dioxins in the water. They are then ingested by incredibly small organisms such as plankton, then work their way back up the food chain to humans.

Microbeads are far too small even for local township water filtration. During a recent conference at Brookdale Community College in Lincroft, New Jersey, Sherri Mason, a professor at State University of New York in Fredonia, estimated 4 million microbead particles pass through a typical water treatment facility, unfiltered.

Even in the Great Lakes, microbeads are abundant. A sample from Lake Ontario showed 1.3 million particles per square kilometer (1,200 per square inch) floating on the surface.

Mason and her team examined 26 different species of fish and a fish feeding bird in the Great Lakes in order to identify microbead contamination. Mason confirmed every single subject identified was contaminated.

What Are You Eating?

Be Proactive

What then can we do to protect ourselves and future generations from this silently developing problem?

1. Do not purchase products containing polyethylene or propylene in it (READ THE LABEL).

These ingredients tell you directly that the product contains petroleum based microbeads.

2. Discontinue the use of plastic bottles and straws.

On New Jersey beaches during 2014 alone, the Clean Ocean Action reported cleaning up about 100,000 straws, 12,000 plastic bottles and 4,000 plastic utensils in the sand. These are staggering numbers!

3. Clean up after yourself!

According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, about 80% of marine litter originates from the mainland.

4. Clean up after others.

Simply because you did not litter does not mean another's laziness will not affect you. Whether volunteering for a beach sweep or picking up a piece of trash in the sand, the goal is to ensure it is disposed of in a manner that keeps you, your family and future generations safe and healthy.

5. Buy GlowGenics

You will be able to sleep comfortable at night knowing all GlowGenics products are free from harmful ingredient's to both you and our planet.


Out With The Old

President Obama signed a bipartisan bill that prohibits the sale and distribution of cosmetics that contain synthetic plastic microbeads.

The law bans rinse-off products that contain intentionally-added plastic microbeads beginning January 1, 2018 and bans manufacturing of these cosmetic containing these tiny plastic particles beginning July 1, 2017.

Why? Billions of these microbeads are washed down US drains daily and enter the waterways. Microbeads can potentially harm the environment and can be consumed by fish in rivers, lakes and oceans, eventually ending up in our food supply.

Consumers concerned about the safety of the country’s waterways, don’t have to wait until 2017 to help protect them from pollution from microbeads. You can start by reading the ingredients and buying products that don't use them.

Avoiding Products With Microbeads

Some products actually list microbeads as an ingredient in product descriptions. Where the ingredient isn't as obvious, here are some terms to look for:

  • polyethylene
  • polypropylene
  • polyethylene terephthalate
  • polymethyl
  • methacrylate
  • nylon
  • polylactic acid

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Ways You Can Help

How to Get Rid of Products that Contain Microbeads


5 Gyres Institute takes microbead products for its educational kits, you can find information on this at Depending on how many products you have, shipping could be prohibitive.

Safe Disposal

If you want to get rid of products containing microbeads, do not rinse them down the drain.

Take your liquids like shampoos and body washes and cover the opening with a coffee filter. Strain the liquid. You can then put the strained substance into your regular garbage. For creams and other thick products like toothpaste, you’ll need to place the product into a container, such as a glass jar, add water and then strain. The strained liquid can then be poured down the drain.

It’s not an ideal solution, but environmentalists believe it’s better for these particles to be in landfill than the waterways.

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