Wet wipes are widely used in everyday life. However, the composition of wet wipes contains various chemical compounds, primarily surfactants, which can negatively affect the environment and human health. For the practical purpose of determining the toxicity of substances and substrates, biotesting methods are used, in particular with garden cress (Lepidium sativum L.). The aim of this study was to investigate the toxicity of wet wipes of Ukrainian and foreign manufacturers using the growth test with garden cress.
The study used 9 variants of wet wipes produced in Ukraine, Turkey and the United Kingdom. To study the phytotoxicity of wet wipes, a circle with a diameter of 9 cm was cut out of each variant of the wipes, placed in a Petri dish and moistened with distilled water. The filter paper instead of wet wipes was used as a control. 10 seeds of garden cress were planted in each Petri dish for 5 days. The experiment was repeated three times. On the 3rd day, germination energy was determined, on the 5th day - germination and biometric and morphometric characteristics (root and above-ground part length). The results were processed statistically. The phytotoxic indexes were calculated - the seed germination index and the root length index.
It was established that 78% of the tested wet wipes (60% Ukrainian production and 100% foreign) were extreme toxicity. Therefore, the tested wet wipes contain toxic substances (in particular, surfactants), show phytotoxicity and can be a source of environmental pollution.