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There’s Nothing “Green” About the Landfill

You Can’t Be Eco-Friendly if Your Returns Go to the Dump

ORMOND BEACH, FL (July 10, 2009): There’s an embarrassing secret the mass market suncare companies don’t want you to know. Despite their bold claims about “going green” and being environmentally friendly, millions of pounds of unsold sunscreen products end up in landfills each year, the result of over-ordering merchants and indifferent manufacturers.
Here’s how it happens: At season’s end, retailers clear their shelves of unsold sunscreen products, often tossing them into empty diaper boxes or other containers and shipping them back to the manufacturers for refunds. The manufacturers are required to sort these returns by lot number, re-qualify the packages and then, assuming the products aren’t damaged and haven’t reached their expiration date, they can ship them back out for re-sale, usually to secondary or international markets.
More often than not, though, the manufacturers avoid the costs and hassles of the re-qualify process and simply send their returns to the landfill. The retailers turn a blind eye to the entire wasteful practice.
Tropical Seas (www.tropicalseas.com), parent company of Reef Safe™ by Beach Buff®, is determined to break this environmentally reckless cycle by attacking the problem from multiple angles.
First, the company recently launched a new line of Beach Buff® “Reef Safe” sunscreens, made with a non-toxic, waterproof formula that is 99 percent biodegradable in seawater within 60-90 days. That’s critical, because 4,000 to 6,000 metric tons of toxic sunscreens are estimated to wash off swimmers into the oceans every year, leading to sunscreen-induced bleaching of the world’s coral reefs.
Reef Safe is the first scientifically substantiated biodegradeable suncare.  Even so-called “natural” products containing titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxides will not biodegrade in any liquid, much less seawater.
“Reef Safe” sunscreens are essential not just for beachfront and resort stores that serve customers venturing into the oceans. Even inland stores should stock biodegradable products, since runoff from lawns, lakes and rivers eventually find their way to the oceans, too.
“We’re very proud of our new line of sunscreens, because they not only provide outstanding protection from the sun, but they won’t damage our fragile reefs or other sea life,” said Dan Knorr, CEO and president of Tropical Seas, Inc. “But we’re not stopping there in our quest to be truly eco-friendly. Because all our hard work is wasted if the bottles simply wind up in landfills.”
The solution is simple: Tropical Seas has built in an “Eco-Friendly Discount” into every wholesale order. In addition to its already-generous 40 percent trade discount, the company is allotting another 10 percent price cut in lieu of a “Guaranteed Sale” provision. Retailers, therefore, can save money up-front on their orders, while ensuring that Tropical Seas products never end up in our nation’s overflowing landfills.
Tropical Seas can substantiate every environmental claim it makes, having subjected its products to a comprehensive series of independent laboratory tests to authenticate the biodegradability of its lotions. We encourage you to ask our competitors for similar documentation on their claims.
No animal by-products are used in its products, and it does not perform animal testing of any kind.

Reef Safe SunCare by Beach Buff sunscreens are available in resort locations across the U.S. Sunbelt, Hawaii and throughout the Caribbean islands, and online.

About Reef Safe SunCare

ReefSafe™ SunCare by Beach Buff®, manufactured and distributed by Ormond Beach, Fla. based Tropical Seas, Inc., addresses well-documented concerns about the damage done to reefs and marine life by the 4,000 to 6,000 metric tons of toxic sunscreens estimated to wash off swimmers into the oceans every year. Reef Safe sunscreens were subjected to a comprehensive series of independent laboratory tests to support and authenticate the biodegradability of the lotions. The research found that Reef Safe SunCare products biodegrade, on average, less than 90 days in seawater and freshwater. No evidence of toxicity to microorganisms and other sea life was detected. Research also found that Reef Safe’s waterproof formula allows less than three percent of the product to come off in water, which compares favorably to the estimated 25 percent of mass-market brand lotions that come off in water.

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Media Contact

Laurie D. Fontenot