Statement by Lezlee Westine, President and CEO Personal Care Products Council In Response to Bipartisan Approval of the Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015

“The unanimous approval today of the Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015 by the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee is a positive step forward that sets the stage for achieving a unified, national approach to the phase-out of solid plastic microbeads in personal care products.

“The bipartisan nature of the bill reflects the broad spectrum of stakeholders brought together by Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) to drive consensus on the best plan of action. The cosmetics and personal care industry is proud to be part of that process and we are prepared to fully phase out solid plastic microbeads in personal cleansing products by July 1, 2017.

“This important legislation would create a pragmatic phase-out process by establishing a national policy aimed at the proliferation of conflicting state and local restrictions that threaten to cause unnecessary disruption for businesses and consumers alike.

“Plastic microbeads are used in cosmetic and personal care cleansing products because of their safe and effective exfoliating properties. Research from around the world, including studies by independent scientists and NGOs, reveal that microbeads from all types of industrial uses are tiny contributors to marine plastic debris – and personal care products would at most contribute just a small fraction of that. At the same time, our member companies take very seriously their role as environmental stewards. As a result, companies voluntarily committed to replace solid plastic microbeads in favor of other viable alternatives. We look forward to further progress on this legislation.”

Statement by Francine Lamoriello, Executive Vice President, Global Strategies, Personal Care Products Council, Supporting Passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP)

“The Personal Care Products Council (The Council) supports the final version of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) released today by President Obama.  TPP provides a historic opportunity to facilitate international trade of cosmetics and personal care products by aligning regulatory policies.

“With the inclusion of an Annex on cosmetic products, TPP is the first trade agreement to promote regulatory convergence and address technical barriers to trade that impede the personal care products industry. The Annex provides an important framework for international regulatory best practices that will raise standards and allow our industry to continue to provide safe, innovative products in a timely fashion to consumers around the world.

“The cosmetic and personal care products industry is a global industry that requires open markets and transparent, consistent regulatory environments. International trade is a critical component to the success of our industry, and significantly contributes to our ability to compete globally, to expand manufacturing and employment, and to support other industries such as advertising, packaging and transportation. The personal care products industry also promotes continued technological innovation and supports small and medium sized businesses.

“Passage of this extraordinary agreement will mean a stronger global personal care products industry, a stronger U.S. economy and more U.S. jobs. We urge Congress to recognize this historic achievement and ratify this agreement.”