(Synthetic Polymer microparticles)

On August 30, 2022, the European Commission (EC) publishes draft amendment to REACh Annex XVII to restrict intentionally added synthetic polymer microparticles & it could ban use of microplastics in cosmetics, cleaning products, pesticides, and sporting arenas.

Microplastics are defined primarily by particle size and are used in a range of applications, including but not limited to paints, oils, abrasives, glitters, and pre-processing raw materials. The full draft and annex with relevant definitions, exceptions to the classification, and exemptions to the regulation can be found in the link below. Many such use cases of microplastics fall within exemptions provided under the proposed regulation.


Synthetic polymer microparticles as defined by the Draft Implementing Act D083921/01. A non-exhaustive interpretation is below:

1. Solid particles which are either at least 1% synthetic polymer by weight or
2. Have a continuous coating of synthetic polymer, and at least 1% of the particles by weight meet one of the following conditions:

a. All dimensions of the particles are ≤ 5 mm.
b. Particle length is ≤ 15 mm and the ratio of particle length to diameter is > 3mm

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