New sponge will be 'cleaner,' says 3M


The lowly sponge is cleaning up its act. The Wall Street Journal reports 3M is about to introduce a revolutionary new version that won't get "gunked up" by eggs or cheese.

The Stay Clean scrubbing pad will have raised dots made of polyester resin instead of bristles.

Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal says 3M will give away millions of Stay Clean sponges early next year in an effort increase its 74 percent share of the U.S. market. It is also competing for market share in countries where most people don't use sponges.

The company says bacteria comes from food trapped in the sponge and not from sponges themselves, which are treated with an "antimicrobial agent." So the new sponge will be more hygienic.

The Centers for Disease Control and other medical authorities say sponges can be sources of contamination and should be dish-washed, microwaved or discarded frequently.

A headline last year in Britain's Daily Mail said sponges were filthier than toilet seats and could even lead to paralysis.

A 3M commercial says the new sponge is a response to consumer complaints.

Next Up


Child hospitalized after drowning in Ham Like

Their current condition is not known.


Man dies after falling from pontoon, being swept under boat

Friends believe he struck the motor while under the boat.


Man drowns in St. Croix River at William O'Brien State Park

It's not clear what caused the 46-year-old to go under.


Man, 66, dies after his ATV was hit by a minivan on highway

It happened in Renville County Friday evening.

Screen Shot 2021-06-12 at 10.09.06 AM

Rochester suddenly shuts down recently opened parking ramp

Original plans for the parking lot included housing above it, but issues with construction prevented it from being built.

Mudcat Grant

Former Twins pitcher Jim "Mudcat" Grant dies at 85

Grant was a critical piece of the 1965 AL Championship team but did much more.

sprinkler water

Lake Elmo among latest MN cities to implement outdoor watering ban

The ban prohibits automatic or mechanical watering outdoors in an effort to conserve water during the period of extreme heat.

LRT trail in Hopkins.

Police: Suspect assaulted woman on LRT trail in Hopkins

They're asking for the public's help tracking him down.


Ecolab launches new bio-based cleaners

Minnesota-based Ecolab Inc. has introdcued a new environmentally friendly line of bio-based cleaners for commercial uses designed for hard surfaces like glass and bathroom surfaces. The company says the products are made from "plant-derived natural resources" and don't require protective equipment for use.

Minn. River getting cleaner, MPCA says

Minnesota environmental officials say cleanup efforts to cut phosphorous levels in the Minnesota River are making a difference, the Star Tribune reports. After testing this summer, the Pollution Control Agency found oxygen levels in one of the state's dirtiest waterways are better than expected. The agency credits a 2004 phosphorous reduction plan for sewage treatment plants

3M plans new Maplewood lab

3M is planning a new lab facility at its Maplewood headquarters, the company has told employees. The facility, to be home to 700 researchers, could open by 2014, KSTP reports. The company in recent years has shifted more of its research and development work overseas.