At Blossom Bottles, we put the health of our customers first. We take great care to sell only bottles that meet our quality standards for safety - no heavy metals, no BPA, no plastics that are known to leach chemicals.
You might be asking yourself lately a lot of questions about plastics, with increasing coverage in the news about BPA and concerns about the safety of plastics. Although there is still much that is unknown about plastic toxicity, we think it's important to understand the current research on different types of plastics, in order to steer clear of certain plastics that are known without question to be harmful to human health.
So let's get on our science hats and have a look.
These plastics listed below are plastics that you will never find here in our store in any part of our products. Let's briefly see why.
1. Number 1 Plastic - Poly Terephthalate (PETE or PET)
PET plastic is usually the type of plastic used to make single-use plastic water bottles. Not only are single-use disposable plastic bottles an environmental issue for our oceans, they can be a health issue as well. This thin, very flexible plastic has been shown to leave elevated levels of antimony in water stored in PET bottles (especially in the heat or for extended periods of time), due to the use of antimony trioxide as a catalyst in the production of PET plastic.
In fact, PETE is used for single-use water bottles with the safety recommendation to only use the bottle one time. Hence, we definitely do not recommend refilling single-use PET plastic bottles!
2. Number 3 Plastic - Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
Polyvinyl chloride is made from large strands of vinyl chloride molecules - a known carcinogen. PVC is often considered the most hazardous and toxic plastic. It has been documented that PVC in its soft forms used for toys, bottles, hospital equipment, and food packaging can leach phthalates, "plasticizers" which are used for adding flexibility to plastics.
Phthalates (in particular DEHP in this case) are considered endocrine disruptors (and also ubiquitous environmental contaminants), which means that they imitate the female hormone estrogen, and are linked to sex changes in frogs and asthma, allergies, and ADHD in children. Therefore, we recommend avoiding PVC like the plague!
3. Number 6 Plastic - Polystyrene (PS)
Polystyrene definitely makes the toxic plastics list. Better known as "Styrofoam," we are all familiar with this plastic as shipping peanuts. Polystyrene, as the name implies, is a long chain of styrene (poly meaning many), which is a "reasonably anticipated human carcinogen." It is considered a toxic substance to the brain and nervous system, as well as the immune system. The leaching of styrene from polystyrene containers into food or liquids is even more probable when the food or liquids in question are hot or oily. Despite this, Styrofoam containers are often used in restaurants as take-out containers, and are also often used as take-away coffee cups. Drinking hot coffee out of Styrofoam or using it to store hot foods is something we'd highly recommend against!
4. Number 7 plastic -Polycarbonate (PC)
When you hear about plastics leaching BPA, the culprit is polycarbonate plastic. This is because polycarbonate is made from long chains of BPA (bisphenol-A), which has been shown to easily leach from bottles made from this type of plastic, as well as aluminum cans and bottles with BPA lining. BPA is, like phthalates, an endocrine disruptor, again causing a long list of strange and severe health problems including reproductive disorders and cancer.
Polycarbonate is being phased out of many products as consumers have spoken out against its use. However, there are still many reusable plastic bottles out there that contain BPA. We make sure not to sell anything that contains BPA or polycarbonate plastic. Polycarbonate is labeled as Number 7 Plastic, although other types of plastics are also categorized under the umbrella of Number 7, which can be any "other" type of plastic not listed in the 1-6 plastic identification system.
To sum it up:
No PETE- Risk of leaching antimony, intended for single use only
No PVC- Leaches endocrine disruptors; highly toxic
No Styrofoam- Likely carcinogen, leaches with hot drinks
No PC (Polycarbonate)- Contains BPA, a known endocrine disruptor