Plastics are man-made materials and in today's modern life are nearly unavoidable. Some are considered safe and others toxic, particularly when used to hold and store food & drink. We like to err on the side of caution so where practical we try to limit use of safe plastics in favour of materials like glass and stainless steel because they are safer for people and the planet in daily use and the manufacturing process.
Safer plastics, namely BPA-free, PVC-free and Bioplastics, are generally considered eco-friendly and safe when used properly. Plastics are typically grouped into seven plastic recycling codes you can use to identify safe plastics and they are found on the underside of the bottle or packaging. Safer plastics are marked:
- #1: PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate)
- #2: HDPE (High-Denisity Polyethylene)
- #4: LDPE (Low-Density Polyethylene)
- #5: PP (Polypropylene)
Importantly avoid plastics with the recycling code #3, #6, and some #7 (read more on these in our 'Materials to avoid').
Also if you must use plastic to hold and store food there are also a few rules of thumb for proper use of safe plastics:
- don’t heat in the microwave
- don’t store fatty or acidic foods
- don’t used if scratched or worn, and
Disclaimer: we are parents with a passion for healthy and sustainable living, not scientific experts. We've compiled information published by industry experts and Australian & international industry bodies including the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the US Food & Drug Adminisration (FDA) and shared the key bits for your convenience above. But we also acknowledge that certain aspects (i.e. the toxicity of plastics) are not fully understood or adequately tested. We always encourage you to do your own research to make informed decisions but hope this helps.