Biodegradable beads coming to Mardi Gras soon!

METAIRIE;La (WGNO)-- Last year we met the 3D Bead Man, who has been crafting amazing bead creations since 1986. His fascination with beads started in the 5th grade, and grew in to a full on passion. Marcus Ciko, a Baton Rouge native, found a way to make a positive impact on the community through beads.

"I just started realized how bad they were for the environment," said Ciko, who has been working on getting a formula developed to make beads biodegradable. "There's been a lot of product development as I told you last year 25 million pounds, 10,000 tons of beads gets ordered every year just for New Orleans just for Mardi Gras, and 98.5% of all beads wind up in a landfill and even metallic beads are tested for 100% lead content, which is way too high. Children are putting them in their mouths at parades. People wearing it, sweating on it and so we want to come up with a non-toxic biodegradable bead and we're actually working on a non-toxic biodegradable bead. We're also working on an dissolving bead that will actually melt after being in the environment after several weeks."

Ciko has met with city officials from the Greater New Orleans foundation and is in talks with having a factory made to produce these beads locally. His wish is to sell them at a comparable price to the once that are currently manufactured and sold from China.