I make salad dressing. The taste of it should remain perfect from bottling it to pouring it on a salad. I also sell our salad dressing to restaurants and grocery stores (for the salad bar) by the gallon. Unlike consumers, the food service could care less about the packaging and more so on the size, they want the biggest container I can put it in.
Last week I was filling our sample bottles, “Minis”, to hand-out for an event and I noticed that the taste was a little off. It was a little flat and I couldn’t figure out why, it was made fresh, sealed imminently with minimal air (about 2 months ago), and stored in a dark climate controlled environment — these are the perfect conditions to maintain freshness. It turns out not all plastics are created equal, you would ‘think’ purchasing something at the grocery store should be considered safe for consuming — think again.
Not All Plastics Are Safe
Look for the recycle symbol on the plastic container, usually on the bottom, and see what number it is. Although some are more toxic than others, you should limit your use of plastic. And NEVER expose to any heat, it only release more toxins into the food you eat. It takes 77 million years for earth to make petroleum, yet we use a plastic bag for a few mins. The following image is a chart with each plastic # that is generally considered safe or not safe for food and drink.
SAFE: Plastics that are generally considered safe for food and drink.
- #1 PETE (Polyethylene terephthalate) — Usually thinner plastics like water bottles, soda containers, or peanut butter jars.
- #2 HDPE (High density polyethylene) — Natural looking containers like a milk jugs, bleach containers, or orange juice containers. Be aware that not all #2 are food grade, if it’s marked with USDA, FDA, or NSF, then it’s safe — if not, call the manufacturer to make sure or consider it not safe.
- #4 LDPE (Low density polyethylene) — Usually hard plastics like storage containers, jugs, or buckets.
- #5 PP (Polypropylene) — Usually containers, cups, or hard color plastics.
NOT SAFE: Plastics that may leach or have hazardous ingredients
- #3 PVC (Polyvinyl chloride) — Usually sport bottles or containers. PVC is actually the most toxic of them all and it is the standard for house plumbing/tap water.
- #6 PS (Polystyrene) — Usually styrofoam containers.
- #7 Other (Usually polycarbonate or BPA) — Usually sports drink, baby bottles, or storage containers.
Bisphenol A (BPA)
Is a toxic gas that leaks from plastics (#7) used in baby bottles, sport bottles, and even in the plastic lining of metal cans. It increases obesity, alters brain development/behavior, promotes cancer, disrupts hormones, sperm count, erectile disfunction… the list goes on. Even the FDA labeled it as toxic and banned it from our baby bottles. It can also be found in printer ink, money, clothing, juice boxes, metal cans, tap water, toothbrush, dental fillings, eye glasses, CDs/DVDs, baby formula, sandwich bags, plastic cups, and beer cans.
Don’t mess around with this shit, get it out of your house. It’s already in our water and in 95% of people:
Although our food scientist said that the plastic shouldn’t alter taste, I’m putting it to the test. On the next batch I make, I’m going to fill 1 bottle, 1 mini, 1 jug (#1), 1 jug (#2) and do a taste test in two months. I’ll post the results here.
Here’s the sources where I purchase my containers:
- 1.25 oz plastic #1 “Mini” — SKS Bottle & Packaging
- 8 oz glass bottle — SKS Bottle & Packaging
- 64 oz plastic #1 jug — Acadiana Plastics Molding
- 64 oz plastic #2 jug — Continental Supply House
- 128 oz plastic #2 jug — Continental Supply House
The world really doesn’t need anymore containers, I wish that you could purchase a food product and someday return to the food producer to refill your container for 30% off.