Glass VS BPA-Free Plastic:
The Answer Will Surprise You

Thought the age-old choice between "glass or plastic" had a clear winner? Think again. It's always much more complex regarding sustainability, costs, food preservation, and safety. Most people believe that glass is the best choice for almost any category, save for portability but is it?
Well, it once was.
In today's situations, however, glass isn't better. This is especially true now that we have BPA-free plastic containers.
Is Glass Better for Cold-Pressed Juices?

Because of many wrong beliefs, many juice companies believe that glass is the better packaging choice. Yet, with recent innovations, it's no longer the case.

Here are a few of the misconceptions and why they're inaccurate.

Misconception #1: Glass gives off no taste or smell, unlike plastic. Metal affects food just as plastic does.

Some plastic containers have their own taste and smell, which mix with the food or drink placed in them. This ruins the natural flavor and scent, particularly of beverages, similar to how soda can taste different when drunk from a can.

However, when people think plastic, they don't consider the BPA-free options, which are just as odorless and tasteless as glass. BPA-free plastics don't alter the flavor or smell of food and beverages, keeping their unique traits as intended. Your green juice will stay tasting fresh in a BPA-free plastic jug just as it would in a glass jar.

Misconception #2: Glass has no chemicals, while plastic does.

While it's made of sand, creating glass is not sustainable because it is very energy-intensive. This depletes the Earth's natural resources faster. If everyone were to switch to drinking using glass instead of plastic, would the planet produce materials needed fast enough to meet the demand? That's where the problem lies.

Originally, plastic was made from petroleum and chemicals. Sadly, it's still how some are produced today but not all!

Much has changed since plastics were first introduced into the market. With more people pushing for sustainability to be part of everyday living, some plastics are made from natural resources. Even more of them are completely food-safe

Misconception 3: Glass is reusable, and plastic isn't. Therefore, glass creates less waste.

Yes, glass is reusable, but how many people are reusing it? Many people have a single-use mindset when it comes to containers, including glass. Likely, a glass bottle will still end up in a landfill. When disposed of, it can take a million years for glass to break down. In that time, it will also pose a danger to people and animals when shattered.

Then there's the issue of whether it's safe to reuse them. With health and contamination being serious concerns these days, its sanitary idea is even more questionable. Are the usual sterilization methods still effective in having clean glass bottles ready for reselling or containing juice?

Glass also creates more single-use waste when it needs to be transported through long distances. Because glass is much more fragile, it requires bigger boxes and more cushion, often styrofoam and bubble wrap. Neither of those is non-toxic, and they're always thrown into the trash once the product is unboxed.

Even when it's not BPA-free, plastic can take 500 years to decompose, which is far less time required compared to glass. Because they're made from natural resources, like corn starch, sawdust, and vegetable oils, bioplastics take only up to six months to decompose completely.

Plastic is also much more lightweight and durable to transport, so containers made of this material would require smaller boxes and less bubble wrap and styrofoam than glass. This produces less single-use waste.

What is BPA, and How Do I Know If the Plastic Has BPA?

BPA is a certain chemical that was frequently used to make plastics, beginning in the 1950s. While more plastic manufacturers are steering away from the harmful compound, it's still commonly found in other materials, such as epoxy resin.

What are the Effects of BPA Consumption?

Over time, BPA causes serious long-term health problems for people of all ages. It affects prostate glands, causing infertility among males, even those of fetuses still in the wombs pregnant mothers. It also causes chronic illnesses, namely cardiovascular diseases, obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes.

The FDA has found that BPA is safe when in very low levels. However, it's best to avoid them completely by using BPA-free plastic products.

Most BPA-free items will usually have a label on their surface to indicate this guarantee.
How Do I Know if Plastic Has BPA?

It's okay to feel the need to be sure that the products we use are safe. The trouble is, when you don't know what to look for, you won't be able to tell whether a plastic may or may not contain BPA. Here are a few tell-tale signs.
BPA Plastic is Clear

Opaque plastic products are safe and BPA-free. Lift an item to eye level, and check if you can see through it. This applies to even colored containers. Make sure you're in a well-lit area to be certain.

Microwaveable Plastic May Have BPA

Unfortunately, the tupperware you use for your lunch and heat in the office may contain levels of BPA. Also, if plastic is labeled level 7, it may have BPA. You can find the number indicator at the bottom center. However, keep in mind that these are only likely but not certain.

No BPA-Free Label

If it doesn't say so on the product itself, look for the words on the packaging. Should you throw it out already? No. Instead, look up information online. Many brands now have online stores with a description and a detailed list of specifications of each product. You can also reach out to their customer service and just ask.
Glass, or BPA-Free Plastic?

Before you decide to judge a product's sustainability by its packaging, remember that glass is no longer the superior choice. Improvements in the plastic industry to have more nature-friendly options, like BPA-free plastic, have made the material a smart choice for the earth-conscious. Give your plastic bottle a chance.