Have you ever heard of BPA? The acronym stands for bisphenol A and it is a chemical that we are regularly exposed to through plastics that we use every day. Most of the food and drinks we consume are packaged in plastic; even cosmetic products use plastic packaging. In today’s era, we are surrounded by plastics everywhere, and most plasticshave one thing in common: the chemical BPA.
It’s no secret that BPA has been controversial for quite some time. It has received a lot of negative attention from scientists, customers, and environmental groups. This has resulted in customer demands for alternatives to plastic products. Some excellent options are aluminum bottles, tin containers, glass jars, glass boxes, and more. This article will shed light on what BPA is and its potential adverse effect on our health.
Bisphenol A, commonly known as BPA, is an industrial chemical that was a revolutionary invention back in the 1950s. Since then, it has been used to manufacture polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins. The BPA chemical enhances the strength and durability of plastics. These two characteristics come in very handy in the product packaging industry. It is also used in resins for waterproof coating purposes of packaging containers. These qualities make BPA a beneficial chemical agent and subsequently used in almost every other plastic product. However, apart from its benefits, recently, BPA has come under negative headlines where experts claim about the adverse health risks.
In general, plastic packaging has its benefits, such as long life, durability, light weightiness, and strength. It is easy and inexpensive to manufacture. But the chemicals used in the production of plastic have received a lot of negative attention, especially BPA. Some scientists claim it is a toxic chemical, and even consumption of BPA on the lower level can cause substantial medical risks. According to experts, BPA copies the structure and function of the hormone estrogen and can also react with hormone receptors, thus changing their behavior and functionality. These changes in the body can cause serious health problems, including infertility in men and women, brain damage, cancer, and type 2 diabetes. It can also bring change in children behavior and may affect their body growth.
When BPA packaging is exposed to high temperatures and pressures, the BPA chemical from the packaging may leak out and seep into the consumable product, which enters the human body through the consumption of such products. The above-mentioned health issues linked with BPA packaging needs further evidence to be proved. Still, some experts are convinced of the consequences, promote caution, and advise people to stay away from plastic packaging and products as much as possible. Therefore, we should look for alternative packaging options; two of the most common alternatives are mentioned below.
In addition to plastic, metal has also been used as a packaging material for ages. However, aluminum has rapidly become a more popular choice within several available metallic packaging options for the food and cosmetics industries in recent years. Aluminum is used to make small tin containers and reusable bottles. Aluminum is a naturally occurring material that does not require any harmful chemicals during the production phase. It is also resistant to corrosion and rust and does not need BPA coating. It is also non-reactive to organic acids and fizzy drinks. These qualities, mixed with its light weightiness, durability, and toughness, makes aluminum a perfect fit for the packaging industries, especially for the food industry.
Aluminum also acts as a barrier against oxygen, air moisture and harmful bacteria. This prolongs the life of food and cosmetic products stored inside the container. Aluminum can also block harmful UV rays and keep the product fresh for an extended time. Besides being food-safe and 100% BPA-free, aluminum is also an eco-friendly and sustainable choice. It is the most occurring metal and the third most common material found worldwide. It is also 100% recyclable and can undergo several recycling processes without any degradation in its quality. This ensures an unlimited supply of aluminum packaging material, making it even more attractive in the available packaging material options.
Glass is also one of the most common packaging materials used in the industry for a long time. Glass materials include glass jars and bottles mainly used to store solid food and fizzy drinks. For its stylish and sleek looks, which gives a premium feel to the product, glass has been trending, especially in luxury brands, to promote consumer products elegantly. Cosmetics products can also be stored inside glass boxes. Unlike plastic, it is a naturally occurring material, and it is entirely food-safe and BPA-free. Like aluminum, glass is free from toxic chemicals and is sustainable, eco-friendly, and recyclable. However, one major downside to glass material is that it is more expensive to produce than aluminum. Furthermore, it is a dense material that is heavier than aluminum. Its fragile nature adds an additional difficulty that needs to be considered when transporting goods in glass packaging. The extra weight and fragile nature of glass make handling of glass products challenging and costly. Thus, you do not see it as a prevalent packaging option in everyday goods.