The MPCA has been promoting non-lead tackle options for ten years, with a variety of tools to raise public awareness of nontoxic alternatives and increase the availability at stores. We have discontinued our popular lead tackle exchange program, but we'd be happy to share our experiences and work with interested parties to explain how to organize one.
Non-lead fishing tackle: Products, manufacturers, and retailers
Non-lead fishing tackle is not a novelty product. Ask for it at retailers and shops, and visit these tackle websites. MPCA maintains this directory of companies offering lead-free tackle—weights of all shapes and sizes that are made without toxic lead.
The S.A.F.E. Angling Kit was rolled out by the non-profit Recycled Fish in time for the 2009 Minnesota fishing opener. Packed with name-brand gear—non-lead weights, biodegradable molded lures, circle and cam-action hooks—the kits have all the tackle you need to head to the lake and start fishing. And it's a great value, since you'll save money over purchasing a tackle box and contents separately.
Whether you’re new to fishing or you’re seasoned angler making the switch to nontoxic weights and baits, this kit offers quality, value, and a mission: S.A.F.E. = Sustaining Angling, Fish and Ecosystems.
Past MPCA efforts
For information on our past initiatives, contact Amanda Cotton at 651-757-2211 or 800-657-3864 toll free.
- Lead tackle exchanges. The agency and a wide variety of educational partners hosted tackle exchange events all around Minnesota, where anglers could swap out their old lead tackle and receive samples of lead-free sinkers and jigs in trade. From 2001 to 2008, nearly 7,000 pounds of lead tackle were collected, and hundreds were educated on the dangers that lead poses to people and wildlife.
- Stocked retail displays. In response to the idea that anglers are enthusiastic about purchasing lead-free tackle, but frustrated by the difficulty of finding it in stores, MPCA partnered with the state Department of Natural Resources and five Minnesota-based manufacturers of lead-free tackle to offer stocked “Get the Lead Out!” retail displays to stores at a discount.
- Educational kit for lake associations. This free resource was offered to members of lake associations around the state to help promote lead-free tackle at their gatherings. The kit included educational materials and product samples.