Don’t Purchase Products with Triclosan

English: Lake Harriet and Minneapolis

For those of us who love our lakes and care about clean water:  You should be paying attention to the recent debate about Triclosan.

What is Triclosan?  It is an antibacterial used in hand wash and soaps and some other products.  For some time it has been recommended not to purchase products using this Triclosan because it can lead to antibiotic resistance. A recent study by the University of Minnesota and the Science Museum of Minnesota has shown that Triclosan is converting to harmful toxins in our Minnesota lakes as well as Lake Superior.

How do you find if a product has Triclosan?  Always read the ingredients in the products you purchase, Triclosan will be listed as an active ingredient on the product label.

How do we dispose of Triclosan?  According to the Minnesota Pollution Control (PCA), “Do not put Triclosan down the drain or toilet!”  At the present time their advice is to throw Triclosan products in the trash.  In the future they hope to have a better plan to dispose of them.  The best is NOT to purchase any product with Triclosan.  “Consumer avoidance can be more powerful than any legislation!” says the Minnesota PCA.

From the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH)

  • MDH recommends against using products containing triclosan at home. Using products with triclosan offers little or no  benefit, and may contribute to the development of bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics.
  • Use products without triclosan to reduce your exposure and environmental impact. Most products advertised as “antibacterial” contain triclosan. Check product labels to see if triclosan is listed as an ingredient.
  • Lake Superior in winter
    Lake Superior in winter

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